Member Priority: Policy

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For more than 30 years now, Practical Farmers has remained focused on helping farmers build resilient farms and communities, primarily through on-farm investigation and farmer to farmer education. As our membership has diversified since the 1980’s, we’ve continued to build our farmer-led niche to include programming for nearly all enterprises and production practices. PFI’s number […]

May 18, 2018 


This past week the Iowa Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) Commissioners’ Annual Conference was held in conjunction with the National Association of Conservation Districts’ (NACD) Summer Forum, where many PFI members were well-recognized. The conservation accomplishments of Iowa’s farmers and SWCD commissioners were on a much larger stage than normal, with an audience that […]

July 25, 2017 


Many members have spoken out in support of the Leopold Center in multiple venues and articles. If you were featured in the news regarding Leopold Center, and aren’t in the list below, let us know by contacting Erica at erica@practicalfarmers.org.     Mark Peterson of Stanton,  Aaron Lehman of Polk City, Liz Garst of Coon Rapids, […]

April 21, 2017 


Today I’d like to introduce you to two farmers: Jenny Quiner and Dusty Farnsworth. Jenny runs a ¼ acre urban vegetable farm in Des Moines while Dusty farms several hundred acres of organic and conventional row crops with integrated hogs and cattle. What do these two have in common besides their membership in Practical Farmers […]

March 1, 2017 


Thank you to everyone who came to our 2017 annual conference! It’s always wonderful to see so many familiar and new faces each year. With so many members coming from all across Iowa (and beyond!), it’s also a perfect opportunity to capture more photos of the many faces that make up Practical Farmers of Iowa. […]

February 23, 2017 


Last week U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack heard suggestions and challenges from 18 beginning farmers during a roundtable discussion. Eight Practical Farmers of Iowa beginning farmer members attended this event. Here is what they shared. Beginning Farmers and Land Access Each beginning farmer around the table had one thing in common – the challenge […]

August 26, 2016 


If you’ve been tuned-in to any news outlet for even a brief period of time recently, chances are strong that you’ve heard a lot about two issues: the elections, and Iowa’s water quality. And if these two issues have left you frustrated and wondering how to get involved and make a difference, consider becoming a […]

May 23, 2016 


“Sustainability is a great word until you realize what it might mean,” said farmer and PFI member Nathan Anderson, borrowing a favorite quote from his former professor, Dr. Matt Liebman.  He continued, “It can be very overwhelming, but is a great task for us as a community of farmers, of eaters, and of citizens.” Anderson, […]

April 11, 2016 


Through CSP, the NRCS provides farmers and ranchers with technical and financial assistance to implement and maintain conservation activities on their farms. Enrollment is competitive and contracts through the program are for 5 years. The 2016 sign-up deadline is March 31 for new and renewing farms. Farmers, ranchers and the organizations working to promote on-farm […]

March 10, 2016 


This past year in Iowa saw record interest in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), with applications far exceeding the funding available. By the March 2015 application cutoff date there were 1,583 applicants, leaving over 600 of them unfunded. That’s actually good news for Iowa’s natural resources, because this competitive program rewards the farmers implementing practices […]

October 13, 2015