News

March 29, 2017

Despite the inclement weather conditions present throughout the Upper Midwest, outwintering is a management style growing in popularity.  With low set-up costs, outwintering a dairy herd wins every time.

March 22, 2017

U of MN Morris students, faculty, and staff have enjoyed locally-raised, organic grass-fed beef as part of the menu selection in the campus cafeteria.  But this is not your ordinary beef...and it doesn't get any more local than this.  In a unique collaboration between the WCROC and UMM, faculty and staff are bringing WCROC products (beef, peppers, and strawberries) to the UMM tables.

March 21, 2017

When choosing genetics for a grazing herd, producers should focus on profitability more than production. “It’s best to think about it in terms of the amount of milk per acre rather than just production numbers,” says Brad Heins, associate professor of dairy science at the WCROC.

March 7, 2017

Current floor space allowances for finishing hogs are based on research that is 10 to 20 years old, when hogs were marketed at around 250 pounds. Recent multi-university research (including the U of MN WCROC) aimed to determine if today’s larger finished hogs require more floor space.

March 3, 2017

U of MN graduate student, Hannah Phillips, was awarded first place in the Organic Research Forum Poster Session at the 2017 Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) Conference held in La Crosse, WI. She is pursuing her Master's degree with an emphasis in organic dairy systems under the direction of WCROC dairy scientist Brad Heins.

February 13, 2017

Scientists are trying to help pork producers respond to consumers' concerns. “We want to assess and evaluate animal welfare objectively...we want to be sure animal welfare is safeguarded based on science and knowledge, rather than just saying that animal welfare is bad or good,” said Yuzhi Li of the WCROC.

February 6, 2017

Each growing season, hundreds of annual flower cultivars are trialed in the Horticulture Display Garden at the U of MN WCROC, Morris.  By the end of the season, certain varieties truly stand out as a superior performer. Steve Poppe, horticulture scientist at the WCROC, determines the Top Ten Performing Annuals for our area.  The 2016 Top Ten were recently featured on KARE 11. 

February 1, 2017

The U of MN has become one of the world leaders having developed novel production technologies and a globally-unique wind-to-ammonia pilot plant located at the WCROC.  New funding from USDA ARPA-E will further advance this important research.

December 19, 2016

The U of MN is the locus of a unique and globally significant collection of research efforts that promise to have significant impacts in the ammonia industry and the broader energy sector.  And the story began in the early 2000's at the WCROC.

December 5, 2016

Certified organic grain has become increasingly expensive. Little research is available on the results of grain supplementation levels and the subsequent impacts on the economics of milk production.  By looking at the various implications of several levels of grain supplementation in comparison to 100-percent grass-fed herds, we've developed practical strategies for enhancing dairy profitability.

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Fertilizer from the Wind

2014 LiveBIG: Wind Fertilizer Feature (Minnesota)

 
The WCROC is home to the only production plant of its kind in the world: producing fertilizer from the wind. Mike Reese, director of renewable energy, and his team have developed a method to combine hydrogen and nitrogen to create ammonia that can be used as fertilizer. Not only does this interdisciplinary approach help to solve important challenges facing the agricultural industry, but also serves to reduce the carbon footprint. The Big Ten Network showcased Fertilizer from the Wind on LiveBIG in January 2014.

WCROC named Outstanding Conservationist for 2011

The West Central Research and Outreach Center (WCROC) in Morris was named Outstanding Conservationist for 2011 by the Stevens County Soil and Water Conservation District. This recognition was based on the ROC's research and educational programs in horticulture, water quality, renewable energy, dairy, swine, and crop production. Read more about it in the Fall 2011 issue of SWCD Conservation News.