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University of Minnesota Extension

Winona County Farm Family

Sobeck Brothers Farms

Gary and Jim Sobeck’s parents, Eugene and Arlene, purchased the family’s farm in 1950. Eugene milked 26 cows. In 1980, Gary and Jim rented the farm and milked 60 cows. Eight years later, the brothers purchased their uncle’s farm and milked 60 cows there as well. In 1995, Gary and Jim purchased their parents’ farm. Twenty years later, the brothers built a new barn, installed Lely robotic milkers, and began milking 260 cows three times a day.

The Sobeck brothers raise all the calves on their farm. All replacement animals are raised on the brothers’ heifer farm and they finish out steer calves on a steer farm. The brothers grow corn, soybeans, alfalfa, and barley. Crops that aren’t used to feed their cattle are dried and stored on the farm and then sold.

Gary’s son, Chris, and Jim’s son-in-law, Alex, are both involved in all aspects of the operation. 

Gary volunteers as a youth snowmobile training instructor. He marks, signs and grooms Winona County snowmobile trails. Jim and three others launched a new farm organization they call Promoting Modern Agriculture that raises funds to offer $1,000 scholarships to graduating seniors toward the cost of college.

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