Washington Co. pork producers earn ‘good farm neighbor award’

Washington Co. pork producers earn ‘good farm neighbor award’

The Stout family from Washington County has been named winners of the “Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award.”

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey presented the award to the Stouts at a luncheon in West Chester on Sept. 6. Northey thanked them for the many ways they lead by example in caring for their land, livestock and community.

“Congrats to Rob and Jean Stout and their family on winning this award that was created to highlight livestock farmers who care for their animals, protect their land and serve their neighbors and community.  The Stout family are deserving recipients and it is my honor to help recognize all of their hard work,” Northey said.

The Stouts have a swine finishing business and raise corn and soybeans.

“I feel responsible to leave the farm in a better place than I got it, and that includes the land and the soil, but it also includes the water that leaves the land,” said Stout. “Water quality is important to me, and we all have to do our part to keep the nutrients here on the land where they belong.”

The family was nominated for the award by Greg Brenneman with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.  He highlighted the family’s care for their animals.

“Rob is PQA Plus-certified, as well as TQA-certified in order to provide the best production practices in animal well-being, food safety and public health,” Brenneman said.

Brenneman also highlighted the Stout’s work to protect the environment.

The “Big Show,” which airs on both WHO and WMT radio, broadcast live from the presentation.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor award, made possible through the financial support of the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers, recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in doing things right. This includes caring for the environment and their livestock and being good neighbors. It is named in memory of Gary Wergin, a long-time WHO Radio farm broadcaster who helped create the award.

Anyone interested in nominating their neighbor for the award should write a letter or e-mail explaining why their neighbor should receive this designation. Applications can be submitted to the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Attn: Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award, Henry A. Wallace Building, Des Moines, IA 50319 or e-mailed to Communications@iowaAgriculture.gov. You also can submit nominations electronically at http://www.supportfarmers.com/programs/wergin-good-farm-neighbor-award.