CONSTANT CANOPY. Jason Mauck’s wheat-and-soybean relay system in Gaston, Ind., is designed to harvest more sunlight, better manage moisture, protect the soil from erosion, add biodiversity and produce greater profitability with lower inputs. 

Developing Systemic Synergies for No-Till Success

Indiana farmer Jason Mauck looks to vertical integration as well as technical innovation to cut costs and boost per-acre bottom line returns for economic resiliency.

With principal involvement in three busy agricultural enterprises, Jason Mauck, has to be constantly thinking, planning and doing to keep all the balls in the air as he juggles traditional family farm management, off-farm agronomic innovation, and the headaches and highs of innovating a new direct-marketing meat business

Mauck manages day-to-day operations of Mauck Land, Hog and Cattle Co., a multi-generational corn and soybean farm near Gaston, Ind. In addition, the farm finishes 25,000 hogs per year and meets much of the corn and soybean nutrient needs with effluent from the livestock. 

He’s also a partner with Jonathan Lamb in Constant Canopy, a non-traditional “innovation farm” where the pair is producing wheat and soybeans interseeded on the same fields. Plus, he spearheaded the renovation of Munsee Meats, a long-time local meat supplier to the area restaurants, transitioning it into a cold storage outlet to deliver direct-to-consumer locally-produced farm products through social-media-driven online sales.

Fork In the Road

Agriculture, Mauck says, is at a fork in the road where the choices are “get bigger and swallow smaller operations” or move closer to the customer and harvest additional dollars through direct marketing. 

“My focus is complete vertical integration and building a strong customer base,” he says.

“The older farm generation faced different circumstances as they grew their farms and involved their children and their families in the business. We can’t do that today. We can’t grow 100-bushel corn and make a 40% margin,” he explains.

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Dan crummett 0618

Dan Crummett

Dan Crummett has more than 35 years in regional and national agricultural journalism including editing state farm magazines, web-based machinery reporting and has an interest in no-till and conservation tillage. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees from Oklahoma State Univ.

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