BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (June 29, 2021) – Hebert Farms near Owaneco in central Illinois is noticing an increased interest amongst consumers for locally sourced, high-quality and sustainably produced meat. To help meet this demand, David and Kristy Hebert, owners of Hebert Farms offer direct-to-consumer beef and pork, as well as chicken eggs and goat milk soaps and lotions. The farm also grows soybeans, corn and wheat as cash crops.
“We’re noticing a high demand or an increase in our area for people seeking out locally produced food and buying locally. They want to know where their food comes from,” said Kristy Hebert. “Quality is also always a big thing for people, so they’re seeking that as well.”
Hebert Farms takes great pride in offering high-quality products to consumers at their local farmer’s markets and events. The high-quality meat is in part a result of consistency in diet and Illinois-grown soybeans are an integral component of that due to the nutritional benefits they provide to the animals.
“The protein is the biggest benefit of feeding soybeans,” said David Hebert. “It also has some oils in it still, even after is extracted and that will give them a nicer hair coat and of course it’s a fat source. Soy whole pellets are a really good source of fiber for the animals as well.”
In addition to quality, consumers are also increasingly looking for sustainably produced food. At Hebert Farms, sustainability involves economically growing crops and raising animals, while also preserving their farm for the next generation. To help sustain their farm for the future, the Heberts practice crop rotation between soybeans, corn and wheat. They also plant cover crops between their cash crops for their cattle to graze and use as a source of forage. In addition, the Heberts practice regenerative agriculture by fertilizing their fields with nutrient-rich manure produced by their animals instead of applying commercial fertilizer.
“The Heberts are just one example of Illinois soybean farmers who prioritize and take pride in their sustainability practices,” said Rachel Peabody, Director of Communications for the Illinois Soybean Association. “All of our farmers work hard to makes sure their resources are properly taken care of and take steps to protect the land, air and water for future generations.”
“Sustainability is high on our priority list because we have two small boys. We hope to be doing everything correctly so if in the future they want to farm that they’re able to,” said Kristy. “That’s really important to us. We try to do things the best that we can to preserve that for them.”
For more information about Soy from Illinois, visit www.ilsoy.org.
About the Illinois Soybean Association
The Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) checkoff program represents more than 43,000 soybean farmers in Illinois. The checkoff funds market development and utilization efforts to increase demand for and use of Illinois soybeans. ISA programs are designed to uphold the interests of Illinois soybean producers through promotion, advocacy, and education with the vision of becoming a market leader in sustainable soybean production and profitability. For more information, visit the website www.ilsoy.org.
Director of Communications
Illinois Soybean Association
Rhea + Kaiser
Tel: (630) 955-2514