Governor’s Ag Summit

Local News

Next week will be a big one for farmers and ranchers in KELOLAND. We know it’s been a tough year for many of them due to a late winter storm during calving season and extensive flooding this past spring.

Next Wednesday and Thursday, hundreds of them will come together in Sioux Falls to attend the annual Governor’s Agricultural Summit where there’ll be a wide range of topics on the schedule.

There’s no question farmers have seen better days. As persistent rain continued to fall and waters rose this past spring, morale began to drop.

Many of them have had to make some tough decisions when it comes to feeding and caring for their livestock to delaying spring planting.

“With everything mother nature threw at us, there were quite a few challenges we were not ready for,” rancher Calli Williams said.

Calli Williams, who ranches with her husband near Mitchell, has experienced those hardships first hand. She’s been selected to be one of the speakers at this year’s Governor’s Ag Summit.

“I think there’s going to be a lot of discussion on hardships that we’ve had in weather and I think there’ll be a lot of discussion on what we can do for the next few years, and how we can remain optimistic,” Lorrin Naasz with the Department of Ag said.

Farmers and ranchers can come listen to experts in the field of ag and state leaders who will be there to talk about the future of ag, but also to listen.

“I think it’s going to be a great event, we have a great lineup two days full of events, and what I think will be great is it’s just an opportunity for those interested in the ag industry to get together, it’s a great networking opportunity to continue to learn and help each other out and grow in the ag industry,” Naasz said.

An industry that will rebound.

“As one of our rancher friends said after the Atlas blizzard was, ‘As a rancher we are an optimistic bunch or we wouldn’t be here and that is very true that’s something that is bread into us, so we just have to stay optimistic and be ready for another year,” Williams said.

Steve Censky, Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be one of the speakers on Wednesday of next week.

Governor Noem will be speaking on Thursday. There is no cost to attend. To learn more about the ag summit, click here.

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