By Amanda Brodhagen, Farms.com
Spring is here and planting is in progress – finally!
For many farmers, spring planting was delayed because of the long winter and cool/wet spring.
But now that farmers are busy working the fields, they are also tweeting about their experiences from the field (#fromthefield). Yes, farmers wear many hats (they can be reporters too), not to mention, they are brilliant multitaskers.
In 2013, Farms.com began sharing farmers’ tweets with the launch of our #fromthefield spotlight series. Because of the popularity of the series, we are bringing it back. It’s a great way put a face to the farmers behind the tweets.
Marty Derks was the first person to agree to participate in our farmer profile series for 2014. He is no stranger to the Ontario agricultural community. Derks is a graduate of Kemptville College and also the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (AALP).
He is best known for his fun-loving personality, community involvement and his big blue equipment. Just like most farmers, he has a colour preference – it’s got to be blue.
You can read Derks’ profile below:
Farm name: Derks Farms Inc.
Twitter handle: @MrFarmerD
Location (i.e. state, province or region): Chesterville, Ontario (Dundas County)
Types of crops grown: Corn, soybeans, barley, quinoa
How has using Twitter enhanced your farming business?
One neat story is how our farm bought our newest planter. I saw a company advertising their planters on Twitter and it piqued my interest. And that company was Monosem. I now own a Monosem 24 twin-row planter. Twitter has been a great business tool for my farming business. I also enjoy connecting with other farmers.
What is an interesting fact about your farming operation?
We have some value-added features on our farm. These features include: a soybean roaster/crusher and a grain elevator. Interestingly, the grain elevator has evolved into a full-time business, which is often busier than the farm. And on the crop side of things, we are experimenting with growing quinoa (20 acres) for the first time.
What makes you proud to farm?
It’s hard for me to explain…but I tell people that farming defines me. Simply put – I love my job. Living in a vibrant farming community makes me proud. I also enjoy farming alongside other farmers who also enjoy what they do.