Kendall Hodgson – Kansas Sorghum Commission

(Conrad) Good morning and welcome to Farm Factor on AGam in Kansas, I’m your host Conrad Kabus. Kansas agriculture provides for some of the world’s demand for crops and this supply cannot be achieved without education on how to develop outstanding yields. That’s why a series of sorghum production schools were offered in early February of 2015 to provide in-depth training targeted for sorghum producers. The schools were held in a variety of locations and the one AGam in Kansas attended was in Hutchinson. (Kendall) My name is Kendall Hodgson and I’m here in Hutchinson, Kansas, at the sorghum school basically learning production methods and practices for growing sorghum. Some of us have done a lot of years, but we always hope to learn more and they’re giving us some good information. (Conrad) Although squarely in the middle of the country, Kansas has long relied on international trade to bolster its economy. It grows or makes plenty of ag commodities that are popular around the world from corn to sorghum. The state’s farmers and agri businesses exported 2.6 billion worth of goods in 2013. (Kendall) Well I’m always interested in growing crops. This particular session is about sorghum. We grow a number of crops. We do a good rotation. We’re in no till, so we need a rotation to make that work. And sorghum has been an up and coming crop. I think the market’s have gotten a lot of excitement about sorghum, so there’s a pretty full house here today. And a lot of other people wanting to learn the same thing. Kansas is often called the wheat state but we’re also the sorghum state. We raise more than half of the sorghum for the whole nation. So, it’s a very important area for it. It’s taken a little back seat to some other crops in recent years, but I think there’s some real excitement. There’s some momentum building in research and the markets and there’s always room for more sorghum. It’s a naturally drought resistant crop and where water is limited that’s a valuable thing to have. (Conrad) Kendall farms in central Kansas and also represents farmers on a national scale. (Kendall) I do farm in central Kansas. And that’s obviously my first job in life. But I do represent other farmers on a national board and I hope to take the benefits of growing sorghum to them. There’s a number of things that the national sorghum producers are doing. We’re primarily involved in policy and farm bill implementation. You know the crop insurance, all those issues that affect us in one way or another.

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