A farmer south of Friedensfeld says it has been a challenging year.

Brent Oswald of Cottonwood Feeds says the weather this summer has not been too kind to them, noting they had nearly 800 acres get hit by hail. 

"It's a little hard to watch all your hard work get wrecked by Mother Nature," says Oswald. "But we'll end up average at the end of the year, so it's okay."

Oswald says he has learned to never take anything for granted and if he can end up having an average or above average crop, he will take that to the bank every year.

The Oswalds farm nearly 3,000 acres. In addition to that, Oswald says they are in the process of starting a feed company. He calls it new and exciting as they are converting their own grain into finished feed for customers around the southeast.

Oswald explains that the reason for this new venture is because they were feeding their own dairy herd and were processing their own soybean meal. A neighbour then asked if they could supply him with feed to help him out. Oswald says the results were good and soon word started to spread. Eventually, they decided that if it made sense, they should try to expand.

According to Oswald, this adventure has been fun, but he admits that because it is new, it is not exactly something you can get advice about from your neighbour. 

"It fits what we do, it adds value to the crops that we're growing," he says. "It's been a fun experience."


We had a great time visiting Cottonwood Holsteins Ltd! This was our last Meals on the Farm presented by Steinbach Credit Union for this year. we ate a great meal from Mennonite Heritage Village, and our sponsors, gave the family some amazing prizes.

♬ Harvest Time - Luke Bryan

Meanwhile, Oswald says they used to operate a dairy farm, but sold that a year ago. They still farm chickens and majority of their acres are grown as grain, with about 45 acres being alfalfa. Oswald notes they have a few loyal customers that they are still supplying with hay. 

When it comes to farming, Oswald says he has the most important job on the planet.

"Producing food for people," he says. "I think I get up every morning and do one of the most important jobs out there."

He notes even surgeons and lawyers cannot do their work without first eating breakfast. 

But Oswald admits that the transition from dairy has been somewhat sad because that is what he grew up doing and that is what he knew. Oswald says however that he did not like where the market was going, and he wanted to have some sort of financial reward for the efforts they were putting in. 

Cottonwood Feeds with sponsors as part of Meals on the Farm (Golden West)Cottonwood Feeds along with sponsors at Meals on the Farm



Steinbach Dodge 

Marc Hutlet Seeds 

Richardson Pioneer 


H&L Motors 

Hanover Doors 

Denton Krentz 

Space Age Kal Tire 

Titan Trailers 

TC Energy 

HUB International 



McVicar Farm Services 

Scotia Bank 

Cornerstone Timberframes 

KK Penner Tire Centres


With files from Judy Peters and Carly Koop


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