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What I've Learned From No-Tilling: Sharing No-Till Benefits Around The Globe

A no-tiller, world-traveler and philanthropist, Howard Buffet takes no-till practices to third-world countries to bring hope to the hungry.

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NAME: Howard G. Buffett (No-till farmer, president of the HBG Foundation, author and photojournalist)

LOCATION: Decatur, Ill.

YEARS NO-TILLING: 19

ACRES NO-TILLED: 1,400 (1,240 crop acres)

CROPS NO-TILLED: Corn, soybeans

Occasionally I’m asked how I manage to farm 1,400 acres and also travel up to 180,000 miles a year visiting impoverished countries for the HGB Foundation.

The short answer: I choose to do it, because circumstances have provided me the opportunity to address severe hunger in places like Africa and Latin America.

At the same time, I love farming. But without the precision ag technology available today — and the time and labor savings I get with no-till — it would be a lot more difficult to do both.

I was a farmer before the HGB Foundation was established in 1999. Following college, I operated a 400-acre eastern Nebraska farm owned by my father. Later, I served on the board of commissioners for Douglas County, Neb., — my home county — and then worked in management for ADM and the GSI Group. In 1992, I bought 740 acres in central Illinois after accepting a job at ADM.

I first started exploring the power of photography while shooting pictures of crops and wildlife on our Nebraska farm and on trips to foreign countries I took as a young man. Over time, and through a lot of trial and error, I advanced my skills and eventually recorded wildlife images around the world. Today, I use photography primarily to demonstrate…

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