Keep Cattle in Minnesota

Sustaining Minnesota’s Beef and Dairy Industries and Environment

A joint project of the MN NRCS and Sustainable Farming Association

The Mission of Keep Cattle in Minnesota is to sustain the beef and dairy industries in Minnesota while protecting our vast environmental resources.


Keep Cattle in Minnesota is targeted toward four main audiences

  • Brand-new farmers
  • Experienced Farmers who are looking to add or adjust a business enterprise
  • Retiring dairy producers
  • Farmers seeking to re-integrate livestock into their row crop operations for the purpose of building soil health

Upcoming Keep Cattle in Minnesota Events

Led by SFA Livestock and Grazing Coordinator Kent Solberg and project coordinator Wayne Monsen, a key function of Keep Cattle in Minnesota will be on-farm events where expert producers will teach farmers – new and experienced alike – new ways to launch or enhance their cattle operations.

Future workshops hewing to the Keep Cattle In Minnesota themes of outwintering, bale grazing and other innovative management techniques will be scheduled and announced here.

Crow Wing River Basin Forage Council Annual Meeting – a Keep Cattle in Minnesota Event

KCIMThe Crow Wing River Basin Forage Council held its 14th Winter Workshop, “Cover, Cattle, Crops – Keeping Healthy Soils, on Diverse Lands, at the Center of Profitability,” on Feb. 11 at Central Lakes College in Staples.

The workshop was sponsored in part by the Keep Cattle in Minnesota Project, a collaborative project of SFA, NRCS, and Grazing Lands Conservation Association.

Over 80 people turned out to hear presenters Ken Miller and Joshua Dukart, both District Technicians with the Burleigh County (N.D.) Soil Conservation District. Miller and his wife operate a 2,000-acre ranch near Fort Rice, N.D. Dukart, a Certified Educator of Holistic Management, remains involved in the management of the family ranch and teaches regularly throughout the US and Canada. Through diverse cover crops, rotational grazing, and crop rotation, they explained how farmers have increased soil carbon, reduced inputs of fertilizers and herbicides, and increased farm production all while improving wildlife habitat and water quality. Dukart was adamant of the need to get cattle back on the land, stating “that science has yet to replicate what comes out the back end of a cow.”

For more information about the Crow Wing River Basin Forage Council, contact Jim Chamberlin at


Keep an eye on this page and in SFA Connect (click here to subscribe) for Upcoming Keep Cattle in Minnesota events. Also, attend the Midwest Soil Health Summit, a full conference geared to improve the health of your soil, which is set for Feb. 18-19, 2015.



Shifting the focus of agriculture from maximum yields to maximum soil health quality is critical to the sustainability of agriculture in Minnesota, the Upper Midwest, the United States and globally.  SFA is committed to continued soil health programming, including programs addressing the integration of cover crops, row crops and livestock grazing.  We will continue the pursuit of funding and programs that foster the development of soil health building practices for the long term.