Getting Off the Commodities Treadmill - Loran Steinlage

Loran Steinlage has been labeled a ‘regenerative’ farmer and branded a conservationist, yet as a farmer in Iowa, in many ways he’s far from the stereotypical image of either. He lives in the heart of the Iowa corn belt, but says he now doesn’t care whether he grows corn or not.

In this episode, Loran shares how his drive for innovation has  come from a series of difficult and life-changing events in his personal life. This, coupled with his love of  tinkering with machines has helped him unlock new ways of farming, such as cover cropping, interseeding and relay cropping, that have not only won him awards and improved profitability, but also caught the attention of machinery manufacturers and helped him spend more time with his family. 

While other farmers in the area are focused on growing row crops at scale, Loran is focused on increased crop diversity, reducing the costs of production, and ultimately getting off the commodities treadmill.

In this podcast, Loran talks about:

  • How he’s able to grow a crop 365 days a year, even under snow.

  • How modifying equipment has allowed him to reduce inputs and run a low cost production system.

  • Why he hopes sharing his innovations will help other farmers consider alternative farming practices and different markets.

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