“I didn't realize how much work I put into farming until I had someone come and help me”
“I didn’t realize how much work I put into farming until I had someone come and help me,” laughed Kevin Ellingson, a contract grower for Iowa Select Farms who recently welcomed his son, Chase, into the farming operation.
Kevin has been a contract grower for Iowa Select Farms for nearly 15 years and also oversees a row crop operation near Iowa Falls. “It keeps getting tougher and tougher for young people to get into farming, so I am glad Chase is starting to take over what I ...have built over the years and is making a go of it,” said Kevin.
And Kevin and Chase have, quite literally, built a remarkable operation. According to his finishing supervisor, Shannon Loyd, their neighbors, truck drivers and members of the community notice how well kept Kevin and Chase’s farm is, and how much they appreciate the American flag flying proudly at the entrance of the site. “Kevin and Chase can be found working all hours of the day and night, helping load crews move chutes in the middle of the night and up early to clear snow for the feed trucks, they go above and beyond to help others out and have a lot of pride in their farm.”
Chase, who graduated from Iowa Falls High School in 2012 and is now 22, takes on more and more every day as Kevin’s right hand man. “He learns quickly, and is naturally good at most everything he does,” says Kevin. He runs the trucking and has the grain operations down—planting, combining and hauling corn, and is getting more involved in the hogs to where I can step away and know everything will be taken care of.”
“Kevin has an incredible amount of pig experience, and a lot of passion for the business,” said Shannon. “I always enjoy my site visits and they are both on board with changes in company practices and goals, and never hesitate to figure out how to do things better.”
Kevin and Iowa Select Farms go way back, even before the company was founded. When Kevin was Chase’s age he helped paint gates and stalls at County Line Engineering, one of the original businesses founded by Jeff and Deb Hansen. “I’ve known Jeff for over 30 years, he’s always been good to me and has helped me build the barns and be able to diversify my farming operation,” said Kevin. “Farming is tough, right now grain prices are not good for farmers, and neither are hog prices, but Iowa Select Farms takes on the risk of the hogs which allows me, and now Chase, to keep farming.”
In their spare time Kevin and Chase enjoy racing stock cars at the Hamilton County Speedway and also spoiling their dog, Spike. “I look forward to many more years with Kevin and now Chase, and we’re grateful to have them as part our team,” said Shannon. #billionpounds