Goals? You have goals in farming?


Well it’s way past Jan.1st. How is that New Year’s Resolution working out for you? Are you following through with it? Have you sort of managed to attain some of that resolution? Or has it been tossed out the window? Maybe you never even made one.

I will tell you what: I honestly am not a big resolution person, but I am a big goal person. You might ask yourselves, “Well what’s the difference, aren’t they sort of the same thing?” Personally, I think a resolution is a single change a person makes in life or lifestyle, and while I think that is great, it’s not for me. What? How can that be? Everyone needs a change, right?

Yes, I do think I need to change, but too often resolutions are tossed out and forgotten about. I need goals. And I need my goals to be a constant change, something that I am working for as part of the bigger picture in my life. My lifestyle is maybe a little different from most people, and maybe a little bit of the same. You see, I’m an animal and crop farmer with my husband and 4 children. Not only am I concerned with how my children are doing, I am also the caretaker of many cattle and pigs that depend on me daily for feed and care. The plants we put in the ground in the spring depend on us to care for all the diseases and pests that may strike on them throughout the growing season, which usually extends from April-November. We tend to each of these living things on our farm with hands and minds that want the best for them. So what are my goals?

  1. To improve upon sustainability on our farm
  2. To implement new practices that will have positive effects without negatively impacting other areas of the environment
  3. To have a profitable farm for my family and future generations
  4. To leave this farm better than it started
  5. To connect with consumers about why our farm makes the decisions we choose
  6. To teach valuable lessons to my children and others about life and the world around us

Hmmm, you see why these goals maybe aren’t resolutions? These changes will only happen over time. And they will only happen with patience and care. They may be lofty, but nonetheless, they are my lofty goals that I am shooting for every single day.

Carla Schultz and her family grow corn, soybeans, wheat, black beans and navy beans. They also have a managed intensive-grazing herd of cattle, and a farrow-to-finish hog business (mama pigs all the way to full size hogs). They direct-market much of the meat that is raised on their farm, but market their crops on more of an open market.