At the Tualatin SWCD’s 6th Annual BBQ and Tour, Loren Behrman accepted the 2011 “Conservation Farmer of the Year” award for Behrman Farms, Inc.
Wes and Russ Behrman began a partnership in 1968. They started out renting 135 acres and some equipment from their father Ernest. At the time they had no harvesting equipment and hired that done. In 1972, Russ and Wes started farming full time, purchasing land and equipment. In 1996, Russ and Wes saw a need to become an incorporated business, thus beginning Behrman Farms, Inc. In 1999, Loren (Wes’s son) became an integral part of the Behrman Farms organization.
Currently Behrman Farms is growing Tall Fescue, Red Clover, Crimson Clover, Wheat, Oats, and other specialty seed crops. Their rotations are flexible depending on weather, markets, and tillage requirements.
Behrman Farms has a conservation goal to leave an overall smaller footprint on the environment by incorporating a no till program, adding filter strips, managing storm water runoff, and integrating into a nutrient and pest management plan. Behrman Farms recently introduced new technological tools to help them manage and reduce chemicals and fertilizers while helping increase the accuracy of their applications.
Over the last several years, the Behrman’s have enrolled into the Environmental Quality Incentives Program to reduce erosion, manage nutrients and pest, and to plant vegetative buffers. Recently, Behrman’s planted an area along the Tualatin River with native trees, shrubs, and grasses to shade the stream, improve wildlife habitat, and to reduce the risk of stream bank erosion.
Behrman Farms Inc. has also participated in other NRCS programs including the Agricultural Water Enhancement Program and the Conservation Stewardship Program.
Loren, Wes, and Russ also have been very willing to host field trips to allow people to see the conservation practices on their place. Recently Behrman Farms and the Tualatin Soil and Water Conservation District were able to educate a local Cub Scout pack on the benefits of planting trees. Congratulations for excellent conservation work – we look forward to many more years of collaborative projects.