Andrew and Megan Stein, of Winona, won the Missouri Farm Bureau (MOFB) Young Farmers and Ranchers (YF&R) Achievement Award during the organization’s 105th annual meeting December 10 at the Lake of the Ozarks. The Achievement Award recognizes the management and leadership skills of young adults who work full-time on a farm or ranch.
The Steins received a plaque from Missouri Farm Bureau President Blake Hurst during the morning YF&R program at the event. They also earned a $500 check from the MOFB Foundation for Agriculture, a $500 check from Ford Motor Company.
The Shannon County farm couple also won a trip to Austin, Texas, to represent Missouri at the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) YF&R Achievement Award Contest this January. The contest is part of the AFBF Annual Meeting where they will compete for the grand prize of a new Ford truck and paid registration to the AFBF YF&R Conference in Louisville, Kentucky in March. Runner-up wins a Case IH Farmall 50A tractor from Case IH. Third and fourth place earn a combination of prizes, such as 40” tool cabinets, a $500 Case IH parts card and Stanley Black & Decker merchandise.
The Steins are past members of the MOFB YF&R Committee. The multi-generation farm family moved to their current farm in 2006 with Andrew’s parents and grandparents. The couple home schools their five children, who also help on the farm raising cattle, sheep, goats, chickens and dairy.
Andrew runs the 300-head cattle farm in partnership with his father, but he and Megan have sole ownership of other endeavors on the farm that include livestock, a greenhouse and a creamery/bakery. They make custom, small-batch hand dipped ice creams in the dairy, artisan breads in the bakery and spring vegetable starting plants in the greenhouse. To add to the diversity, they recently started a clam aquaculture venture with Andrew’s father, whose main business is Stein’s Meat Processing. Andrew and Megan handle the bookkeeping and management for the meat processing business.
Since 2006, the couple has expanded the operation several times, adding new beef and dairy cattle facilities, incorporating intensive grazing, adding cross fencing and improving water access for livestock so the cattle herd could expand. They now sell all natural calves through a video auction. Soon they will add electronic ID and records that stay with individual animals as they move through the production process.
The couple is passionate about teaching agriculture and offer on-farm seminars on farm production and homemaking skills. They will add two college student internship programs, one for small ruminants and one for large ruminants to provide hands-on learning.
Second place in the contest went to Brian and Lynn Martin, of Boone County. The couple received $200 and an expense-paid trip to the AFBF Annual Meeting.