Brings commanding knowledge of weeds and agronomic systems to your cooperative
Today’s Farmer welcomes Dr. Jason Weirich as a contributor. He will begin contributing to the magazine and its digital outlets beginning next month. Jason is MFA Incorporated’s new director of agronomy.
Weirich grew up in Eads, Colo., where he worked on his grandparents’ farms in that Colorado environment of corn, sorghum and cattle.
He attended Oklahoma Panhandle State University in Goodwell, Okla., where he earned degrees in Agricultural Business and Agronomy.
“At that point in my life,” he said, “I was most interested in farming. But OSU had a research station on that end of the state, and I was encouraged to get a master’s degree by Rick Kochenower, who was the state grain sorghum specialist for Oklahoma State University. I’d been helping him as an intern doing field research. I took his encouragement and enrolled at Oklahoma State University to get my master’s degree where I studied and worked under Dr. Case Medlin, a weed specialist.”
Weirich earned his Master’s of Science in plant and soil weed science with an emphasis in applied weed science in 2007.
He took his experience at OSU and matriculated to Mississippi State to work on a PhD.
“My dissertation was research on glyphosate-resistant weeds in peanuts. It was a six-state project that looked at the long-term viability of glyphosate technology. I wanted to look at more than just the chemistry and plant science, though. I wanted to research the overall economics, which is how I ended up with a minor in agricultural economics from that experience,” said Weirich.
With his doctorate achieved, Weirich joined the University of Missouri’s Delta Research Center in 2010 where he was assistant extension professor of weed science. At MU, he focused on cotton, corn, soybeans and wheat.
Joining MFA Incorporated in the final months of 2011, Weirich will now head up the agronomy department where he will keep a close eye on agronomic issues in MFA’s trade territory and help train MFA field employees.
“My goal throughout my career so far both in education and now with MFA is to reach farmers,” he said. “My doctorate was 100 percent on-farm work. I enjoy the challenges and problem solving that come from not just weed control, but refining and employing agronomic practices that give farmers the best chance at success.”
Weirich said his work at the University of Missouri helped him realize how important cooperatives are to farmers in the Midwest and Mid-South.
“It’s going to be fun,” he said. “I like to be in front of producers and help find commonsense solutions for agronomic issues on their farms.”