DES MOINES — The Jeff and Barb Hansen family farm from Dallas Center will be recognized as one of six recipients of The Way We Live Award at the 2017 Iowa State Fair. The family will be honored in an awards ceremony on Friday, Aug. 18 at 11:30 a.m. on the Christensen Farm Stage in the Paul R. Knapp Animal Learning Center.
The Way We Live Award recognizes Iowa families for their hard work and love of farming. Each family exemplifies a dedication to animal agriculture and strong farm values. Each entrant was asked to submit a short essay describing how the occupation of farming and living on a farm has shaped their life. Six families were chosen out of forty two entries from a variety of commodities and areas in Iowa.
In June 1986, Jeff Hansen bought his first load of feeder pigs and shortly after, began raising corn, soybeans, alfalfa and added cows and a farrow to finish hog operation. Jeff raised Hy-Line breeding stock from 1996 until 2010 when changed the hog operation to comply with the Niman protocol.
Off the farm Jeff and his wife Barb started the Dallas County 4-H club, Granger Strivers, in 2001 where they helped guide both farm and non-farm kids with livestock projects. All of their daughters were involved in the Junior Red Angus Association and daughter Kate and her husband are still involved today. Daughter Sarah is teaching elementary children about food through the ISU Food Science Club and daughter Abby is teaching all age children about agriculture through the ISU Agronomy Club.
The Hansens say, the farm is the center of their family. Everything they’ve done revolves around the farm – their daughters’ extra-curricular activities, family vacations and even college choices. This focus has unified their family to a common goal, to all work together to make the farm successful. “Our family is very tightly knit as we rely on each other for our livelihood. We all love our farm and value it as part of who we are.”
As a recipient of the Way We Live Award, the Hansen family receives a prize package of $250, admission tickets, free parking, various coupons, a special recognition in the Paul R. Knapp Animal Learning Center on August 18 as well as video and photo recognition throughout the Fair. The Way We Live Award is sponsored by DuPont Pioneer and media sponsor WHO NewsRadio 1040.