4-H clover

Emma and Ellie Donnay of the Kimball Kruisers 4-H Club recently earned third place in the University of Minnesota 4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge.

Five teams from across Minnesota met online to share their research findings for the University of Minnesota 4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge. After months of data collection, project development, critical community and industry feedback and careful mentoring, the 4-H’ers presented their findings to judges who assessed both the process and product of their work.

The teams hailed from four Minnesota counties, each addressing an agriculture issue their local community is experiencing.

Counties and topics addressed were: Big Stone County, Pork Production Amidst COVID-19; Le Sueur County, Teaching Youth About Agriculture Careers; Meeker County, Organic Rabbit Cakes; Mower County, Escherichia Coli in Water Runoff; Mower County, Food Insecurity.

The 4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge is a hands-on learning experience to inspire Minnesota youth. Teams of two to five participants in grades 6-12 work with volunteer coaches and mentors to identify agriculture-related issues in their communities and develop and share solutions. Teams participate in a state event to present their projects, share their learning experiences, learn about post-secondary educational opportunities, and more.

The Donnays earned third place for their project focused on creating an organic rabbit cake product to address rabbit health and pellet shortage.

First place in the 2020 4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge went to the Le Sueur County Beyond the Farm team. The team of Sydney and Addision Mitchell developed a project called “Teaching Youth About Agriculture Careers.” They created videos and lesson plans to teach middle and high school-aged youth about careers in agriculture and each received a $1,000 scholarship to support their post-secondary educational goals.

Second place went to 4-H’ers from Big Stone County with a project based on the effect of COVID-19 on pork production.