The Kuntz Family – Passing pragmatism on to the next generation

Submitted

If there’s one thing the Kuntz brothers – Brad, Geoff and Trevor – hope to pass on to their kids, it’s dedication. It’s the spirit of dedication that has kept their farm in Battleford, Saskatchewan in business over 65 years and three generations. “There’s a lot of hours put in and you just do it because you have to,” remarks Brad, “You have to love every aspect of it because it’s endless.”

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In fact, from day to day, there’s no room for anything less than total commitment to the farm. Everyone, from the brothers’ 67-year-old father, Larry, to Trevor’s young sons Ty and Brayden, needs to pitch in to keep the operation running smoothly. The Kuntzes grow wheat, canola, peas and barley alongside their herd of purebred Simmental cattle.

With such a diverse enterprise, no time or money can go wasted. That means when the Kuntzes make a decision on the farm, it has to be the right one. There are no guesses; the brothers look for solid research, proven results, and their own experience before investing in seed. “I look at all the companies and try to compare,” says Brad, “With the trials that we’ve done ourselves with the DEKALB brand team, and the  results  that I’ve seen on our farm, I know I can trust DEKALB.”

The Kuntzes’ canola fields are filled with healthy-looking DEKALB  74-44 BLand DEKALB 75-45 RR  hybrids. Having grown 74-44 BL for years, the family has recently introduced  75-45 RR  for it’s high-yielding, early maturing plants. The new canola has made it easier for the family to juggle their seeding and harvest timing with the needs of the herd. The Kuntzes trusted the advice of their DEKALB Territory Account Manager, Nola Acaster  before making the switch. Nola  has maintained a relationship with the Kuntz clan for years, even as her own family has grown. “[She’s] there when I call and I get answers,” says Geoff. “When you have questions, she always gets an answer.”

Each of the Kuntz brothers takes the long view when considering what to put in the ground next. With Ty and Brayden already taking interest in the family business, Trevor and his brothers charge the young boys with maintaining the farm yard (it’s impeccable).

The long view means considering how and what they do today will impact the land when the time comes for the next generation to take over. Whether considering rotating new crops, like soybeans, or trying different tank mixes, the farmers are always looking at proactive solutions to keep their Genuity Roundup Ready canola yielding better every year. “We’re here to farm for many years, and there’s nothing like hindsight, saying ‘I wish I would have’ 10 years later,” Brad explains, “Sometimes cost efficiency and what needs to be done are two different things.”

This also extends to how time is spent on the farm. With young kids in the family, having more time at the end of the day goes a long way. It’s got Trevor thinking about straight cutting some of his canola crops in the not-too-distant future. “On some of this rugged land, it’s time consuming to swath, whereas if you could just run over it once and be done with it...” says Brad with a wry smile.

For now, the growing family has struck a pretty good balance. The cows graze happily in the pasture, and the canola stands strong in the field. After a great harvest last year, the brothers are confident they’ll be looking at a solid yield again this season. The pragmatic outlook that seems to come with the Kuntz name has served them well, and it’s one they’re proud to pass on to the next generation.

We thank Brad, Geoff, and Trevor for choosing DEKALB brand seed for their farm and wish the entire family a safe and successful harvest this year and for many years to come. Check out the results of farmer-managed DEKALB Market Development trials on DEKALB.ca this fall.

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