The Reckoning of the Wheat
A dogged drive to succeed—and unwavering faith in God—has kept the Mertens family farm thriving for decades. But in an age of corporate dominance, disaster is always just around the corner.
Photos by Elliot Ross
Depending on whom you ask, your faithfulness to God can have a direct correlation with your crop yield. The Mertens family of Northeast Colorado certainly believes this to be true.
The Mertens work year-round to grow corn and millet, raise cattle, and clean and sell seed wheat. Jim and Danelle Mertens live less than two miles away from their eldest son Cole, who over the last few years has slowly been taking the reins of the family farm from Jim. He’s embraced technology to increase yields, which has proved to be absolutely necessary during a time when many other family farms are folding. They have also been diversifying as a way to secure income stability.
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