The Planted Row: Farm Forum needs your help

We have a good thing going here at the the Green Sheet. Our small staff works hard to find stories from around the world that will keep you aware of what is happening not only here in the Midwest, but across the world in the agriculture community. We pull in excellent production advice from Extension specialists and agribusiness innovators. We hear from farm wives who keep us apprised of life on the home front. In our pages, ag business management experts tell you the best ways to market your crop and save a buck here and there. We have top-notch columnists like Alan Guebert and Sara Wyant, who keep us informed of the political scene, and Jerry Nelson and Chuck Cecil, who remind us to keep smiling. We stay on top of all the wonderful things our 4-Hers and FFA members are achieving. We get livestock advice from experienced veterinarians. We offer gardening tips, recipes, and we try very hard to make you aware of upcoming events and educational opportunities in the ag world. We even have a writer, Connie Sieh Groop, in Argentina right now to find out what our South American competitors are doing and see if we can learn from them to become more productive.

The Farm Forum works hard to keep pace with current technology. We have revamped our website, created Farm Forum apps for your smartphones and tablets, and started a new Farm Forum Equipment site. All of our classifieds are online, so you can find the goods and services you need when you need them.

Through all these endeavors, we are doing our best to draw the ag community together. It’s called the Farm Forum because that’s exactly what it is – a discussion forum for our farming world. It’s not just a newspaper; it’s a place where you can go to find out not only what your neighbors are doing, but what other farmers are doing across the world. Through your paper, we are connecting you with every aspect agricultural business and life. Every week, we bring the farming world to your doorstep.

If we’re going to continue to do all this, we will need your help. As most of you know, the Farm Forum is a free publication enjoyed by roughly 100,000 readers each week across the Midwest. Since 1966 the Farm Forum has been funded in part by the very people who read it every week by volunteering money to help offset delivery expenses. Every year we send out requester cards asking for your help. The U.S. Postal Service requires that we receive 19,501 returned requester cards to maintain our status as a requester publication, which allows us to mail your paper to you at a discounted rate. So, with the post office projecting rate increases in 2014 at more than triple the inflation rate, it is paramount that we hit our goal of 19,501 returned cards. Otherwise, we will be forced to reduce our mail distribution.

This year the Green Sheet is trying to get a little “greener” by asking our readers to go online to fill out their requester cards. It’s safe, easy and will save on the amount of cards we send out in the mail. To request your Farm Forum online, visit www.farmforum.net and click on the REQUEST YOUR FARM FORUM main menu button to get started. This really is the easiest and quickest way to respond. You can save money on a postage stamp, and this is the only option to pay with a debit or credit card.

A regular mailing will still take place in February or March, but hopefully, we will be able to forgo a substantial list of people that have already filled out the requester online, so please visit our website and respond by Jan. 31.

If you are unable to go online, we have included the requester form below this column. You can cut it out, fill out the information, sign and date the form, and return it to the Farm Forum at PO Box 4430, Aberdeen, SD, 57402-4430.

Whether you are a casual reader, advertising partner or a long-time reader, we are asking for your help. Your requester card will make a huge difference, so please head online and fill out the form today. We are confident in our family of readers to once again help the Farm Forum reach its goals!