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Producer Features

We bring you feature articles on successful forage producers and their business models to help you enrich your management style.

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Editor’s note: This is the fourth in a four-part series looking at how four individuals are turning dreams into reality to become first-generation farmers and ranchers. To view Part 1 – Lance Peters, click here; to view Part 2, – Sarah Sortum, click here; to view Part 3 – Jacob Schenk, click here.

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Jacob Shenk grew up around dairies in northern Virginia, and his parents operated a small dairy.

After college graduation, Shenk knew his parents’ dairy wasn’t big enough to support his return, so he worked on a neighbor’s farm for a few years. In 2008, he simply decided to head out on his own.

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Editor’s note: This is the second in a four-part series looking at how four individuals are turning dreams into reality to become first-generation farmers, ranchers and dairymen. To view the Part 1 spotlight on Lance Peters, click here. To view Part 3 featuring Jacob Shenk, click here. To read Brandon Fawaz's story in Part 4, click here.

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“It’s all about profitability,” Wisconsin dairy farmer Don Boland says.

“You get paid for fat, protein and low somatic cell count.”

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Editor’s note: This is the first in a four-part series looking at how four individuals are turning dreams into reality to become first-generation farmers, ranchers and dairymen.

How difficult is it for first-generation farmers to get started in farming? Conventional thought over the past decade or so is that it’s nearly impossible with land prices rising and profit margins decreasing. But is it as impossible as we thought?

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For Jim Elizondo of Crescent City, Florida, grazing is more than just a management practice; it’s also an art.

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