SF story highlights Hayes' role in promoting contract feeding

November 27, 2019

Dr. Dermot HayesA special Nov. 25 Successful Farming story highlights how Dermot Hayes, professor, was instrumental in promoting the acceptance of contract hog feeding in Iowa in the late 1980s. 

“Everything you saw about it in the press was negative,” says Hayes. “If you believed the community activists, contract feeding would drive everyone out of the countryside.”

Hayes was an assistant professor without tenure, but he took a chance. “I kind of got hot about the situation and thought somebody needed to write about the positives,” he says. He wrote a 14-page report and sent to the Des Moines Register.

“The point I was trying to make was that contract production was going to be good for Iowa,” says Hayes. “Contract feeding had the potential to renew rural Iowa, create jobs, help the soil with manure, increase corn basis, and increase corn yields. This was a good thing.”

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