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Turkey Farmers Honored with Turkey Promoter of the Year Award

Contact:  Lara Durben

Phone:    (763) 682-2171

E-mail:     ldurben@minnesotaturkey.com

Note: Photos available up on request

(Buffalo, MN )  … The Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) has honored three turkey farmers with its 2017 “Turkey Promoter of the Year” award.

Scott Heymer, Princeton, Minn., Wayne Knudsen, New London, Minn., and Paul Kvistad, Wood Lake, Minn. were given the award for their farm advocacy efforts on behalf of the MTGA.

Both Heymer and Knudsen opened up their farms for two “Day in the Life of a Turkey Farmer” video projects for Minnesota Turkey. Kvistad worked with Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom to conduct MTGA’s first ever virtual farm tour last November.

“Putting yourself in front of an audience you can’t see takes a leap of faith,” said MTGA and MTRPC Executive Director Steve Olson. “We are grateful that we have farmers like Scott, Wayne, and Paul who are willing to share their farm stories to a larger audience – many of whom are far removed from the farm and food production.”

The award was presented at the MTRPC Annual Meeting on March 15 in Saint Paul, Minn.

For more information about the Promoter of the Year Award or the Minnesota Turkey Research & Promotion Council, please call 763/682-2171, email info@minnesotaturkey.com or visit www.Minnesotaturkey.com.

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About MTRPC

MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey  year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.

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Individuals Honored for Extraordinary Efforts

Contact:  Lara Durben

Phone:    (763) 682-2171

E-mail:     ldurben@minnesotaturkey.com

Note: Photos available up on request

(Buffalo, MN )  … The Presidents of the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) and Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) have chosen to honor three worthy individuals for their extraordinary efforts on behalf of Minnesota’s turkey farmers in 2016,

MTGA President Gene Brownfield of Redwood Falls, Minn., presented his 2016 President’s Award to Warren Formo, executive director of the Minnesota Agricultural Waters Resource Center (MAWRC).

The MAWRC provides a voice for farmers on issues ranging from manure management to water appropriations to buffers, and serves as a resource to help the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association add water quality science to their advocacy efforts. Founded in 2008, MTGA is a charter member of this organization.

MTRPC President Robert Orsten of Wilmar, Minn., presented his 2016 President’s Award to two individuals:

  • Carol Cardona, University of Minnesota, for developing an important testing tool used during and after the 2015 highly-pathogenic avian influenza outbreak that helps the industry assess the health status of a flock before moving birds to market.
  • Dale Lauer, Minnesota Board of Animal Health, for overseeing the much-needed expansion of the Minnesota Poultry Testing Laboratory; keeping Minnesota’s avian influenza response plan updated; and strengthening the state’s incident command structure to respond better to any future avian influenza outbreaks.

The MTGA and MTRPC President’s Awards are given annually to individual(s) chosen specifically for their dedication and commitment to the goals of the organization.

The official award presentation took place at the MTGA’s annual meeting in Saint Paul, Minn. on March 15.

For more information on the MTGA or its President’s Award program, please contact the MTGA at (763) 682-2171 or visit www.Minnesotaturkey.com.

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About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys annually . Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.

About MTRPC

MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey  year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.

For further details on both organizations, visit , www.minnesotaturkey.com, find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey) and follow us on Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey)

 

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Outgoing MTGA & MTRPC Board Directors

Contact:  Lara Durben

Phone:    (763) 682-2171

E-mail:     ldurben@minnesotaturkey.com

Note: Photos available up on request

(Buffalo, MN)… Turkey farmers Gene Brownfield of Redwood Falls and Robert Orsten of Willmar along with Errol Lagred of Best Veterinary Solutions, Willmar, were honored by the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) and the Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) for their many years of service to the organizations’ Boards of Directors at its Annual Meeting on March 15 in Saint Paul, Minn.

Brownfield and Orsten both served nine years total for the two organizations and are past presidents of MTGA and MTRPC, respectively. Lagred served six years as an Allied Member Representative on the MTGA Board of Directors.

“On behalf of MTGA, I thank these three directors for their dedication and leadership to our organization,” said incoming MTRPC President Kim Halvorson. “They have made significant contributions to our organization and Minnesota’s turkey industry and their commitment to MTGA, MTRPC, and to our industry has been invaluable. They will be missed on the Board.”

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About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys annually. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.

 

About MTRPC

MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey  year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.

 

For further details on both organizations, visit , www.minnesotaturkey.com, find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey) and follow us on Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey)

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MTGA and MTRPC Announce 2017-18 Officers

Contact:  Lara Durben

Phone:    (763) 682-2171

E-mail:     ldurben@minnesotaturkey.com

Note: Photos available up on request

(Buffalo, MN)… The Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) and Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) announce the following slates of officers for 2017-2018:

MINNESOTA TURKEY RESEARCH & PROMOTION COUNCIL

President – Kim Halvorson, Halvorson Farms, Morristown

Vice President – Chris Huisinga, AgForte, Willmar

Secretary-Treasurer – Max Velo, Evelo Inc., Rothsay

MINNESOTA TURKEY GROWERS ASSOCIATION

President – Chris Huisinga, AgForte, Willmar

Vice President – Scott Christensen, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Willmar

Secretary-Treasurer – Paul Kvistad, Kvistad Poultry, Wood Lake

Officers were officially announced at the annual meetings of the MTGA and MTRPC, held March 15 in Saint Paul, Minn.

MTRPC Officer Bios:

MTRPC President Kim Halvorson of Morristown, MN owns and operates Halvorson Farms. She has been a turkey farmer for 26 years and raises approximately 100,000 heavy toms/year (about 3.2 million pounds/year) annually in Rice County.

Kim is currently a member of the Faribault Area Chamber of Commerce; is a minority liaison with Farm Service Agency; is the current vice-chair of the Rice County District One Hospital Board of Directors. She also served on the Rice County Board of Adjustment from 2006-2011; the Rice County Planning and Zoning Commission from 2002-2011 (serving as past chairwoman); and is a founding member and past chairwoman the Rice County Childcare Association from 1995-2002.

Kim has conducted many media interviews about the turkey industry and was also featured on a DVD compiled by the Minnesota Farm and Food Coalition about livestock production in Minnesota. She has three daughters – Breann, Benita and Greta – and a son, Bernt.

MTRPC President Chris Huisinga is the General Sales Manager for Ag Forte. Ag Forte (the flagship brand for Willmar Poultry/Life-Science Innovations) is the largest supplier of day old turkey poults in the world annually selling 100 million turkeys globally.

Prior to his current role Chris was the General Manager for Ag Forte’s North Division consisting of over 300 employees across 2 hatcheries, 58 parent stock breeding farms, 2 grandparent breeding farms, a vaccine production division, and veterinary services. During his career he has held roles in operations, marketing, finance and business development for Life-Science Innovations and its affiliates and Wells Fargo Corporation in both Minnesota and Florida.

Chris has a BA in Business from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul (Minnesota) and a MBA from Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers (Florida). Chris, his wife Joi, and his two children Ethan (13) and Ella (11) live in Willmar, MN.

MTRPC Secretary-Treasurer Max Velo has been actively involved in the turkey industry for 12 years. With a farm in Ottertail County, he raises 400,000 hens per year. Max is particularly interested in domestic and international turkey markets, as well as animal health.

Max’s family consists of Piper, Daryl, Kelsey, Alanna and Nita.

MTGA Officer Bios:

President Chris Huisinga is the General Sales Manager for Ag Forte. Ag Forte (the flagship brand for Willmar Poultry/Life-Science Innovations) is the largest supplier of day old turkey poults in the world annually selling 100 million turkeys globally. 

Prior to his current role Chris was the General Manager for Ag Forte’s North Division consisting of over 300 employees across 2 hatcheries, 58 parent stock breeding farms, 2 grandparent breeding farms, a vaccine production division, and veterinary services. During his career he has held roles in operations, marketing, finance and business development for Life-Science Innovations and its affiliates and Wells Fargo Corporation in both Minnesota and Florida.

Chris has a BA in Business from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul (Minnesota) and a MBA from Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers (Florida). Chris, his wife Joi, and his two children Ethan (13) and Ella (11) live in Willmar, MN.

MTGA Vice President Scott Christensen currently works as the Director of Breeders, Hatchery and Nutrition Services for Jennie-O Turkey Store and his office is based in Spicer, Minn. He has spent 35 years in the food industry, with 12 of those directly in the turkey industry.

In addition to his work at Jennie-O Turkey Store, Scott serves as a board member of West Central Industries and has been a member and volunteer with First Lutheran Church. Scott and his wife, Cheri, have three daughters – Carrisa, Tess and Jenna.

MTGA Secretary-Treasurer Paul Kvistad, a second generation turkey farmer from Yellow Medicine County, owns and operates Paul Kvistad Poultry, which produces 200,000 light hens per year.

Currently Paul is serving on the Education/Workforce Committee for MTGA and has been on the board of the Yellow Medicine County Corn Growers for 15 years. He served as a past member/president for the Echo Lions Club for 12 years and a past board member for the Farmers Co-op Elevator for 9 years. In addition, he continues to usher at Swan Lake Church.

Paul and his wife Jamie have three sons: Hunter, Payton and Brock.

About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys annually. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.

About MTRPC

MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.

For further details on both organizations, visit , www.minnesotaturkey.com, find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey) and follow us on Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey)

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MTGA and MTRPC Board Election Results Announced

Contact:  Lara Durben

Phone:    (763) 682-2171

E-mail:     ldurben@minnesotaturkey.com

Note: Photos available up on request

(Buffalo, MN)… The Minnesota Turkey Research and Promotion Council (MTRPC) and the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association have announced election results for each of its Boards of Directors.

The newly elected directors are:

MINNESOTA TURKEY GROWERS ASSOCIATION

Region 2

Paul Kvistad, Kvistad Poultry, Wood Lake (Incumbent)

At-Large Positions

Ken Gleaves, Turkey Valley Farms, Marshall

MINNESOTA TURKEY RESEARCH & PROMOTION COUNCIL

Region 1

Scott Heymer, Red Bridge Farms, Princeton (incumbent)

Also appointed to an Allied position on the MTGA Board was Barry Koppen of Purina Animal Nutrition. This is Koppen’s first term on the MTGA board.

At-Large Positions

Eddie “Max” Velo, Evelo Inc., Rothsay (Grower-At-Large)

Loren Brey, Brey Farms, New Ulm (Breeder-At-Large)

All elected Board directors will serve three-year terms and assumed their seats on March 1. Each of these boards meet approximately six times per year to guide MTRPC and MTGA activities, respectively.

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is the agency responsible for conducting and certifying the MTRPC election, which was conducted by mail-in ballot in January. MTGA members voted for its Board election at the MTGA annual meeting on March 15 in Saint Paul, Minn.

Elected directors are listed alphabetically below, along with biographical information:

Loren Brey – MTRPC

Loren Brey is the owner of Brey Farms in Brown County, near Sleepy Eye, MN; he has been involved in the turkey industry for 30 years. Loren and his wife Brenda, raise 20,000 breeder hens a year on their farm. In addition to raising breeder hens, Loren also grows corn and soybeans. Loren has served as a school board member for several years for the Lafayette Charter School.

Loren and Brenda have two daughters – Morgan and Courtney.

Ken Gleaves – MTGA

Ken has been involved in the turkey industry for 38 years. Ken started in the turkey industry as a brooding manager for Shinn Turkeys in central Nebraska. He ended his time there managing three farms, feeding four farms and running two feed mills. Also, in that time, Ken and his wife, Diane had their own small hen farm for eight years.

During Ken’s time in Nebraska, he served on the board of directors for the Nebraska Turkey Growers Coop in Gibbon, NE, the only turkey processing plant in the state for many years. He was also involved in the Nebraska Poultry Industries.

Ken worked with the Willmar Poultry Company for seven years, first in the breeder division, then as a manager for company commercial farms. In 2014, Ken moved to Turkey Valley Farms and serves as their live production coordinator.

Ken and his wife Diane reside in Willmar. They have been married for 38 years and have five children and three grandchildren.

Scott Heymer – MTRPC

Scott Heymer, the owner of Red Bridge Farms, Inc. in Princeton, has been involved in the turkey industry for 40 years. Annually he raises 150,000 heavy toms.

Scott and his wife Lennea have been married for 32 years and have two children: Becky and Brian. Brian has joined them in working on the farm. 

Barry Koppen – MTGA

Barry Koppen lives in Spicer, MN with his wife Megan. He has a Financial Economics degree from Gustavus Adolphus College. Barry started his career working for Jennie-O Turkey Store in 2010 as an Area Supervisor working the Benson Area servicing company, lease, and contract farms.

Barry started at Purina Animal Nutrition in 2013 as a Poultry Sales Specialist. At Purina, he works with turkey, pheasant, layer, and broiler producers across the country to provide them with feed ingredients, complete feed, and nutritional services.

Paul Kvistad – MTGA

Paul Kvistad, a second generation turkey farmer from Yellow Medicine County, owns and operates Paul Kvistad Poultry, which produces 200,000 light hens per year.

Currently Paul is serving on the Education/Workforce Committee for MTGA and has been on the board of the Yellow Medicine County Corn Growers for 15 years. He served as a past member/president for the Echo Lions Club for 12 years and a past board member for the Farmers Co-op Elevator for 9 years. In addition, he continues to usher at Swan Lake Church.

Paul and his wife Jamie have three sons: Hunter, Payton and Brock.

Max Velo – MTRPC

Max Velo has been actively involved in the turkey industry for 12 years. With a farm in Ottertail County, he raises 400,000 hens per year. Max is particularly interested in domestic and international turkey markets, as well as animal health.

Max’s family consists of Piper, Daryl, Kelsey, Alanna and Nita.

About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys annually. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.

About MTRPC

MTRPC is the oldest check-off based commodity organization in Minnesota, celebrating 50 years in 2015. Since 1965, the MTRPC has worked diligently to encourage consumers to eat more turkey year-round, sponsor innovative turkey research and educate a variety of audiences about the benefits of turkey. Programming at the MTRPC is funded by a voluntary grower checkoff program.

For further details on both organizations, visit , www.minnesotaturkey.com, find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey) and follow us on Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey).

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Thanksgiving Week Kicks Off with Governor Dayton Talking Turkey

 MTGA Announces Donation of $9,000 Toward Turkey Product Purchases to Hunger Solutions Minnesota

St. Paul, MN (November 21, 2016) – Governor Mark Dayton continued the time-honored tradition – dating back to the 1940s – of kicking off Thanksgiving week with the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) and Minnesota Turkey Research & Promotion Council (MTRPC) at the State Capitol today. Also in special attendance was a tom (male) turkey, raised near Melrose, Minn.

“As we look back on 2016 and compare it to 2015, our farmers are thankful for the success we have had this year after rebounding from the impact of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza,” said MTRPC President Robert Orsten, a turkey breeder farmer from Willmar, Minn. ”Fortunately, 2016 has been influenza free for our flocks, yet we remain diligent in our preparation to protect bird health if the virus should return.”

At the event, Orsten announced the donation of approximately $9,000 to Hunger Solutions Minnesota (HSM), which will go toward the purchase of turkey products to be distributed to food shelves and food banks across the state.

“We know there are many families who struggle to put food on the table,” said Orsten. “Minnesota’s turkey farmers are committed to helping do their part to combat hunger with our annual donation to Hunger Solutions Minnesota.”

Orsten grew up on a turkey farm, and today he and his family have farms in Kandiyohi and Swift counties where they raise 70,000 breeder turkeys and also grow corn, beans, and hay.

Since 2001, MTGA has donated approximately 235 million pounds of turkey to various areas of the state, which will feed 315,000 people in Minnesota. In other words, enough turkey feed Kandiyohi County – where the Orstens raise most of the birds – 7.5 times over!

These funds have been raised from contributions by Minnesota’s turkey farmers and MTGA allied members as well as a portion of the sales from MTGA’s Turkey To Go restaurant at the Minnesota State.

HSM, a comprehensive hunger relief organization that works to end hunger in Minnesota, will coordinate the purchase and distribution of the turkey. One in five Minnesota families struggles to put healthy meals on their tables. The need for emergency food relief continues to be a problem in Minnesota even as our economy has improved.

“As we prepare for Thanksgiving, it’s important to keep in mind our neighbors who struggle with food insecurity throughout the year,” said Colleen Moriarty, Executive Director of Hunger Solutions Minnesota. “Hunger Solutions Minnesota connects people in need with resources through the Minnesota Food HelpLine, and supports local food shelves throughout the state. The generosity of groups like the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association has an impact on the families we serve throughout the year.”

Approximately 450 turkey family farmers from Minnesota raise about 46 million birds annually. Minnesota remains steadfast at the #1 position in the U.S. for turkey production.

Current U.S. turkey production stands at 228 million this year – which means Minnesota farmers raise nearly 20% of all U.S. turkeys. Approximately 95% of all Americans will eat turkey at Thanksgiving, according to the National Turkey Federation.

MTGA was founded in 1939. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S. and is also home to three successful turkey processing companies – Jennie-O Turkey Store in Willmar, Northern Pride Cooperative in Thief River Falls, and Turkey Valley Farms in Marshall. These companies collectively have created over 2,000 turkey products for the consumer and foodservice markets that are shipped across the country and the world.

Each turkey raised in Minnesota brings $17.46 in economic value to the state – which means Minnesota’s turkeys and the farmers who raise them generate over $800 million in economic activity for the state.

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About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 250 turkey farmers raising an estimated 46 million turkeys in 2013. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S. For further information, visit www.minnesotaturkey.com or find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey and Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey).

About Hunger Solutions Minnesota

Hunger Solutions Minnesota works to end hunger by advancing fair nutrition policy and guiding grassroots advocacy on behalf of hungry Minnesotans and the diverse groups that serve them. We connect Minnesota’s food shelves and hunger-relief organizations with the necessary funding, technical assistance and logistical support to reach thousands of Minnesota individuals, families and children in need. Our work is made possible through the generous support of donors across the country; each sharing our commitment to ensuring no Minnesotan will struggle with food insecurity alone. For further information, visit www.hungersolutions.org, on Twitter @hungersolutions or on Facebook www.facebook.com/HungerSolutionsMinnesota

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Minnesota Turkey Releases “Day in the Life of a Turkey Farmer” Video

 

(BUFFALO, MN) – Minnesota turkey grower Wayne Knudsen of K & B Turkeys was recently featured in “A Day in the Life of a Turkey Farmer” video. This video is part of a series of videos created and published by the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) as an effort to promote and educate consumers about the turkey industry. These videos provide an insightful view into the life of a turkey farmer – the challenges and joys of raising turkeys in Minnesota.

Transparency is important to many consumers – they want to know where their food comes from, how it’s grown and how it’s processed. Tours of poultry facilities are limited due to biosecurity practices that are implemented to protect flock health. To get around this obstacle, the MTGA has put out these videos on their website to provide the public the opportunity to look inside a turkey facility.

Knudsen is one of the 450 turkey farmers in the state of Minnesota, and he was thrilled to be able to share his family’s turkey farm on the video. “This is a legacy. If you take care of the birds, the birds will take care of us and the next generation,” Knudsen said.

Minnesota ranks number one in turkey production in the United States, producing around 46 million turkeys per year.

Poultry leads the way in the world’s most advanced farm technology and production techniques. In the video, Knudsen explains how technology is used on his farm – from measuring feed output, temperature of barn and much more. Farmers go to great measures to ensure good health and well-being of their birds to produce a safe product for consumers.

As you enjoy your Thanksgiving meal this year, be sure to remember that it may be a Minnesota turkey farmer that raised it for you!

Knudsen’s video can be viewed on MinnesotaTurkey.com or YouTube.

Learn more about Minnesota turkey farm families at MinnesotaTurkey.com

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About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, MN, is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 46 million turkeys. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S.

For further details, visit , www.minnesotaturkey.com, find us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey) and follow us on Twitter (@MinnesotaTurkey)

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Minnesota Turkey’s Media Opportunities at the State Fair

 

What:

Interviews with Minnesota Turkey Growers Association Executive Director Steve Olson and audience samples from our Turkey To Go restaurant at the Minnesota State Fair!

When:

Steve Olson is available August 25-28 and again September 3-5.

(Note that audience samples can be made available during all dates of the State Fair; however Steve’s availability for interviews is limited to the dates above.)

What:

We love to talk turkey!

  • Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) has been serving up turkey at the Minnesota State Fair for 58 years (since 1958).
  • Our State Fair concession stand, Turkey To Go, is known for its signature Giant Juicy Turkey Sandwich and Slow-Roasted Turkey Drumsticks. We also debuted a new breakfast sandwich last year – the “Tasty Turkey Sunrise Sandwich” that includes our famous Turkey To Go pulled turkey, an egg, slice of American cheese on choice of bun.
  • Minnesota is ranked #1 for turkey production, processing, and hatching in the U.S. and is home to 450 turkey farmers who raise approximately 46 million turkeys annually on 600 farms.  Minnesota has the most family-owned turkey farms of any state in the U.S. and many of our turkey producers are 3rd, 4th and 5th generation farmers.
  • Minnesota Turkey Research & Promotion Council’s booth in the Dairy Building will feature:
    • A large pictorial display on the history of turkey farming
    • A comprehensive look at how turkey products get to your kitchen table
    • A fun turkey-cutout of a tom (male) and hen (female) turkey for photos
    • Free recipe cards and other brochures

To Schedule:

Please contact Lara Durben, MTGA Communications Director, to schedule an interview with Steve and/or audience samples:

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16 Fun Facts: Minnesota Turkey & Turkey To Go Concession

 

  1. Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) has been serving up turkey at the Minnesota State Fair for 58 years (since 1958). Our State Fair concession stand, Turkey To Go, is known for its signature Giant Juicy Turkey Sandwich and Slow-Roasted Turkey Drumsticks.
  1. Our menu:
  • Giant Juicy Turkey Sandwich ($7.25)
  • Slow-Roasted Turkey Drumstick (Original, Sweet Glazed & Buffalo – $8.50)
  • Toppings: bleu cheese & buffalo sauce; brie & cranberry sauce; and crispy chopped bacon & sweet glaze ($2.50)
  • (NEW in 2015) – Tasty Turkey Sunrise Sandwich – Our signature Turkey To Go product, an egg, and slice of American cheese on a bun ($7.25 or add optional turkey bacon and/or croissant at an additional costs)
  1. A portion of every sale goes to Hunger Solutions Minnesota.
  2. Turkey To Go is located next to the All-You-Can-Drink Milk Stand (1256 Clough Street).
  3. Turkey To Go was named the People’s Choice Award for “Best Food or Beverage” at the 2012 Minnesota State Fair!
  4. Turkey To Go by the Numbers:
  5. We expect to cook approximately 20,000 pounds of turkey at Turkey To Go this year for our Giant Juicy Turkey sandwiches. From 2011-2015, Turkey To Go sold a total of 236,000 Giant Juicy Turkey sandwiches and 52,000 Slow-Roasted Turkey Drumsticks
  1. Our Giant Juicy Turkey Sandwich (eaten without the bun) and Jumbo Turkey Drumstick are gluten-free.
  1. Don’t forget about our breakfast sandwich, which debuted in 2015 – the “Tasty Turkey Sunrise Sandwich” that includes our famous Turkey To Go pulled turkey, an egg, slice of American cheese on choice of bun ($7.25). Fairgoers can also swap the bun for a croissant for an additional $1.00. Turkey bacon can also be added for an additional $1.00.
  1. Turkey To Go also has locations at Target Field and Target Center. Up-to-date location information can be found at twitter.com/turkeytogo or visit www.turkeytogo.com for details.
    • Target Field – Turkey To Go is behind home plate between sections 112 and 113 as well as outside Section 318.
    • Target Center
  1. Turkeys raised in the U.S. are free of added hormones and steroids. In fact, there are no hormones or steroids approved for use in turkey production in the U.S. (and there hasn’t been since the 1950s).
  1. Minnesota is ranked #1 for turkey production, processing, and hatching in the U.S. and is home to 450 turkey farmers who raise approximately 46 million turkeys annually on 600 farms. Minnesota has the most family-owned turkey farms of any state in the U.S. and many of our turkey producers are 3rd, 4th and 5th generation farmers.
  1. MTGA was formed in 1939 as a nonprofit trade association dedicated to fostering a successful turkey industry. Today MTGA and its sister organization, Minnesota Turkey Research Promotion Council work on behalf of Minnesota’s turkey industry in the areas of research, promotion, public relations, issues management, education and government affairs.
  1. Nutritionally, turkey has more protein than chicken or beef – plus fewer calories with zero trans- and saturated fat.
  1. MTGA’s Web site – minnesotaturkey.com – features links to turkey recipes for consumers and the foodservice industry. We also have recipes at our State Fair booth in the Dairy Building.
  1. Producing a quality, nutritious and safe product is the top priority for turkey farmers as well as turkey processing companies, which follow USDA guidelines for food safety. Consumers, too, need to do their part to ensure that turkey is handled properly in the kitchen and cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees F., as measured by a food thermometer.
  1. Find us on the Web at TurkeytoGo.com or MinnesotaTurkey.comcom and on social media:

facebook.com/TurkeyToGo and facebook.com/MinnesotaTurkey

Twitter: @TurkeyToGo and @MinnesotaTurkey

pinterest.com/MinnesotaTurkey

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MTGA Announces Allied Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

2016 MTGA Allied Lifetime Achievement Award | Minnesota Turkey Growers Association

(BUFFALO, MN) – Brad Kelley of Animal Health International was honored for his many years of service to Minnesota’s turkey industry at the Minnesota Turkey Growers Association (MTGA) Summer Conference last week in Duluth, Minn. Kelley received the 2016 MTGA Allied Lifetime Achievement Award.

MTGA Allied Committee Member Errol Lagred of Best Veterinary Solutions, Inc. presented the award to Kelley on Thursday, June 16, as he was surrounded by friends, colleagues and family members.

Kelley started his career in animal health in 1979 at Iowa Vet in Mankato, Minn. where he worked in the warehouse and drove semi-truck for seven years. Kelley continued to excel in his career in animal health and accepted a job in the office as an inside sales person and later on, accepted an outside sales position. Kelley currently works for Animal Health International, in his 37th year of his career in animal health.

“I am honored to present the Allied Lifetime Achievement Award to Brad Kelley. Brad is an exceptional individual with a strong passion for animal health. His outstanding service to the turkey industry has benefited many turkey growers over the years,” said MTGA Allied Committee Member Errol Lagred.

The MTGA Allied Lifetime Achievement Award is based on several criteria:

  • Long-term service to the industry (20+ years).
  • Long-term support of the MTGA.
  • Well-respected by peers and customers.
  • Commitment to enhance Minnesota’s turkey industry.

About MTGA

The MTGA, founded in 1939 and located in Buffalo, Minn., is a nonprofit association dedicated to fostering a successful Minnesota turkey industry and its ability to make positive contributions to consumers, the economy, the environment and its members. Minnesota is currently ranked #1 for turkey production in the U.S. with its 450 turkey farmers raising approximately 45 million turkeys annually. Minnesota has the most independent turkey farmers of any state in the U.S. For further details, visit www.minnesotaturkey.com.

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Photo cutline: Brad Kelley (Animal Health International) and MTGA Allied Committee Chairman Errol Lagred (Best Veterinary Solutions).