Quade Wins Regional Minnesota Farm Bureau Collegiate Discussion Meet

The Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) hosted a regional Collegiate Discussion Meet at Ridgewater College in Willmar. The competition was held Monday, November 14.

This year’s regional winner was A.J. Quade of Westbrook from Cottonwood County studying agribusiness. The runner-up of the regional contest was Ashle Lukes of Lester Prairie in McLeod County who is studying dairy management and agricultural education. The Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation sponsors a $200 scholarship for the winner and a $100 scholarship for the runner-up for each regional Collegiate Discussion Meet.

Undergraduate students in agriculture from Ridgewater College took part in the meet. Students participated in two rounds of discussion followed by a Final Four. They were judged on their basic knowledge of critical farm issues, and their ability to exchange ideas and information in a setting aimed at cooperative problem solving. The two topics discussed by contestants were:

  • How can we ensure that farmers and ranchers, not government agencies, are driving the management of natural resources?
  • Today’s food companies employ many tactics to gain a marketing edge. What is the purpose of food labels? How can Farm Bureau work to ensure that consumers understand the labels and have confidence in the safety and quality of their food?
  • How can we as farmers and ranchers maintain “ownership” of our intellectual and proprietary information? (Big data, unmanned aerial vehicles, unauthorized videos)

Quade and Lukes advance to the state Collegiate Discussion meet to be held on Saturday, November 19 as part of the 98th MFBF Annual Meeting at the DoubleTree Hotel in Bloomington. The state winner receives an expense paid trip from the Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation sponsored by Christensen Farms to the American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) Young Farmers & Ranchers (YF&R) Leadership Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, February 10-13, 2017 to participate in the national competition. The winner also receives a $500 scholarship and the runner-up a $250 scholarship from the Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation sponsored by Gislason & Hunter.

Other contestants included Elizabeth Golombiecki of Morris, Travis Molitor of Watkins, Derek Stehr of Zumbrota, Dakota Krumrey of Hector, Mathew Hellmann of St. Joseph and Megan Hollerman of Burtrum.