Teiken Farm Earns Water Quality Stewardship Certification
May 23, 2023 by Alyson Levig
Jason Teiken joins the rising number of producers becoming certified as stewards of water quality through the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP) - a voluntary opportunity that certifies farmers taking the lead in implementing conservation-minded practices to protect water quality. Teiken’s operation accompanies over 1,300 producers in Minnesota farming more than 950,000 certified acres within the program. Photo: Jason Teiken posing with his MAWQCP Certification sign.
“I’m very fortunate to be on the family farm and implement practices that benefit water quality,” Teiken said. “Conservation truly runs deep within our family.”
Teiken achieved water quality certification for his tracts of land in Becker and Mahnomen counties in June of 2022. His operation mainly focuses on raising 40 cow-calf pairs that rotationally graze 159 acres of perennial pasture. This type of grazing involves moving livestock to different units of pasture to encourage recovery of the previously grazed vegetation to prevent soil erosion and promote water quality. The practice also enables Teiken to maintain grass filter strips and riparian buffers surrounding creeks and wetlands within his pastureland.
“I’ve been able to really see the benefit of conservation after the latest major rain events,” Teiken said. “Erosion shouldn’t be happening on farms today, especially when there are practices are out there designed to prevent it.”
Teiken’s operation also includes maintaining 38 acres of perennial cover for wildlife habitat and renting out his available cropland to partners who exercise best management practices for water quality. Currently, the rented land is farmed by the Dave and Beth Eiynck Partnership, where they manage a corn, soybean, and wheat rotation with conservation tillage and a goal of maintaining a 30% crop residue cover on the soil surface throughout the year. They too, also need to conserve filter strips and tree buffers to protect nearby creeks, rivers, and ponds.
“The farm’s been in the family for several generations,” Teiken said. “I hope to carry on its legacy with the help of conservation efforts and all the hard work my kids, Jacob, Ellen, and Emma have put into it. Without them, none of this would be possible.”
Overall, Teiken’s current management practices on his 472-acre farming operation result in the conservation of natural resources within Becker County, where water quality is protected, and soil erosion is reduced.
Posted In: MAWQCP