FAIRVIEW TOWNSHIP — University of Minnesota Extension Service has recognized Marlin and Kathy Torkelson as Cass County Farm Family of the Year.
The Torkelsons were honored during the Tuesday, Sept. 21, Cass County Board meeting. Because they were harvesting crops, the Torkelsons were unable to attend the meeting to accept the award, but Greg Booth and Susan Harrison, representing the Cass County Extension Committee, shared the family’s background information with the board.
The Torkelson farm has been in the family for 75 years, with Marlin Torkelson’s parents beginning the homestead in 1946 by purchasing 120 acres. In 1947, they built a dairy barn and began milking cows. The farm continued as a dairy farm until 1992, when Marlin Torkelson purchased 50 Black Angus heifers.
The farm has grown to 1,400 acres with 11 land transactions and 800 rented acres.
The Torkelsons met in the area and married in 1979. They have one son, Eric Torkelson, who showed interest in the family business at the age of 13 when he began purchasing his own herd. He is now married, with a child on the way, and lives close by. In 2014, the Torkelsons became the Torkelson Cattle Co. LLC and now maintain 350 cows and background calves.
Along with raising cattle, the family also grows corn, oats and hay with soybeans added this year.
Marlin Torkelson previously served on the Wilson Township board as supervisor for over 35 years, was a member of the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Farm Service Agency Crow Wing/Cass County committee for the past nine years and previously served as a member on the Land O’ Lakes Board.
The Farm Family of the Year Program works to recognize families that demonstrate a commitment to enhancing and supporting agriculture in their communities.