Dear Editor:


No one who has known you even casually would doubt your care for Iowa. I was interested, however, about your recent editorial concerning hog feeding operations in Iowa.

My wife and I decided to return to Decorah during our retirement years. We are both deeply involved with Luther College. We met at Luther, and have had 4 children and 4 grandchildren graduate from Luther.

As a retired Lutheran pastor, it has been so fulfilling to have had some 15 congregations who have used my ministry on an interim basis, usually while they await a new full-time pastor.

Many of these congregations are largely rural. Often there are large hog confinement operations that various members are doing. Never in these many years in Iowa and southern Minnesota have I seen an operation connected to “factor” or an “industry.” All of these many hog or mega farm operations are done by the inclusion of family or friends taking on various parts of the operation.

Thus one family runs their shop, another their seeding, another their harvesting, another the dairy, another hogs, etc. I would be happy to supply many names of farm families in this area who do this.


Pastor Gene Hermeier

Decorah