Nicollet & Sibley County Ag News

January 2022

University of Minnesota Extension
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Your Ag Educator- Notes from Emma Severns

Happy New Year!

As we start this new year I look forward to starting new projects, learning new things, and gathering for new programs. I am excited to share many program opportunities for you to engage with Extension in 2022. Read through the various opportunities coming up in January. I am also starting to put together program ideas for this year so feel free to reach out to the Extension office with any program topics, workshop ideas, or any other suggestions you may have.

Best wishes,


Extension Events

Beef Quality Assurance Certification

Tuesday, Jan. 18th, 9:30-11am

540 7th Street

Lafayette, MN

The Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certification program supports people working in the beef industry in providing the safest, highest-quality beef. University of Minnesota Extension and the Minnesota Beef Council will host several in-person viewings of the BQA training session across the state in 2022. Producers attending this free workshop will receive a three-year BQA certification.

Cost is free. Registration is required. Register at

Hot Topics in Agriculture

Women in Dairy: Creating Value Added Opportunities

Thursday, Jan. 27th, 6:30-9pm

14848 Minnesota 7

Hutchinson, MN

he Minnesota Dairy Initiative and the University of Minnesota Extension are excited to announce the upcoming Women in Dairy event!

This year’s program will feature a panel of three businesses that have explored alternative business strategies outside of the traditional day-to-day dairy farming. From artisan cheese to direct market beef, panelists will share the story behind their businesses, how they got to where they are today, their vision to move their businesses forward and the lessons learned along the way.

Cost is $20/person. Register by January 10th. Pre-registration is required and space is limited.

To register, contact the Sibley County Extension office at 507-237-4100 or register online using here.

University Resources for You

Fall 2021 Tax Planning for Farmers

Most government payments to farmers and small businesses require inclusion as income on your annual federal or state tax return. The continued COVID-19 pandemic, summer 2021 natural disasters including hail and drought, and other governmental funding initiatives will result in some farms and small businesses having significant governmental income payments this year. Since most farmers are cash-basis tax filers, farmers may take advantage of several tax planning strategies to help maximize their after-tax income.

Successful fall tax planning requires that farmers maintain up-to-date farm accounting records to determine what strategies to implement. Click here to learn more.

New online course for manure management planning in Minnesota

Manure management planning - or accounting for how, when, and where you’ll apply all of the manure generated on your farm every year - is an important aspect of livestock production. There are often rules associated with manure management planning, depending on the state where you farm. In Minnesota, the Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has created a Manure Management Planner (MMP) spreadsheet tool to help you create your plan while meeting state guidelines. We recently created an online course to help folks learn how to use the planner while also learning more about the science behind manure management!

UMN Soil Testing Laboratory

The Soil Testing Laboratory is part of the Department of Soil, Water, and Climate in the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources.

Soil testing takes the guesswork out of fertilizer recommendations, ensures fertile soil without pollution of the environment, and makes good economic sense. Our recommendations are based on laboratory results, soil characteristics, crop history, crop nutrient requirements and are specific to Minnesota locations and conditions.

Please email us at, or call 612-625-3101 for more information. (Email messages often result in the fastest response.)

Farm Information Line

Contact the Farm Information Line for reliable, research-based answers from Extension agriculture and natural resources experts. It is a statewide service backed by a network of local educators, so you'll get information to meet your needs.

Call: 1-800-232-9077

Hours: 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Monday through Thursday.
Afterhours: Leave a voicemail and we'll return your call the next business day.
Anytime: Email us at
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