W9689 Cherry Road
Antigo, WI 54409

August's Harvest

In the 1930s, Herman Igl purchased a patch of land in northern Wisconsin and founded one of the earliest commercial potato farms in the region.

His son Tom proceeded to work on this land his entire life. With his wife Nancy, he raised seven children. Two of them – Brian and Brad – have joined the family business.

Up to the 1990s, the Igls used to be a dairy and potato farmstead. Later they sold their milk herd and began a transition to organic. Their modern farm is now a 185-acre certified organic facility.

Potatoes are their main specialization, but Igls also plant crops, including oats, clover, alfalfa, hay and green manure for soil improvement. They have recently started growing certified organic field peas for seed. A small horse and cattle herd is raised on the fields during the rotational breaks.

The Igls operate their farmstead under the following four principles:

1. Their mission is to grow healthy and quality food according to the organic farming rules. Taking care of soil and improving its structure and nutritious properties is as important as harvesting crops.

2. They recreate the natural systems to maintain a healthy ecosystem of soil, flora, fauna and people. The farmers obey the rules of nature instead of trying to cheat them with unsustainable farming fueled by artificial fertilizers.

3. Healthful, nutritious food grows only on healthy, balanced soils. Mindful organic production is the best way to achieve it. This is why the Igls avoid any GMOs, synthetic agricultural fertilizers, artificial growth hormones, and subtherapeutic antibiotics.

4. They strive to build the most direct and honest marketing relations with consumers. The Igl family want their customers to know everything about their food and how it is produced. They want to supply health nutrition to the people who care about quality and respect the hard work.

In a farmer’s rare moments of free time, Tom is riding horses, painting, gardening, and reading books. Nancy practices quilting, stamping, crafts and reading. And Brian is fond of cross-country skiing, books, hunting and wildlife protection.

Organic farming became the family’s calling for both economic and ethical reasons. The Igls’ reject the destructive conventional agriculture and the unsustainable future it holds. In addition to this, the industrialized food system is designed solely for big corporations. Smaller independent farmers cannot survive on it, so they find different approach.

According to Tom, the satisfaction with a good crop is the best thing about being an organic farmer. It is a great feeling when someone purchases the product and genuinely appreciates the farmer’s hard work. Gratitude is what helps the small traditional farms to overcome endless challenges from unstable economy, weather and pests.

Tom hopes that more people will support regional, family-grown, organic products and help a healthier local economy and farm families in the future. He tries to persuade them to abandon corporate food for more eco-friendly option.

The Igls farm has a special relationship with its consumers and its land. While organic crops become more and more rare, this family-run business keeps improving their methods and facilities to provide health and delicious natural food.

The Igls’ know a lot about farming organically and they continue to learn how the whole natural system works. They hope the customers are satisfied with the fruits of their land, and they appreciate their support.

You can find Igls’ products
at their farm, and occasionally at CSAs. Also, ask about it at the Twin Cities co-ops(supplied by Roots & Fruits) and Willy Street Co-op Madison retails.

For more details, please call (715) 627-7888 or send your e-mail to iglfarms@verizon.net