Barron County Farm Bureau members Logan and Amber Dwyer’s involvement in agriculture began at an early age.
Amber was raised on a 60-cow dairy farm south of Chetek. Logan’s grandparents also were dairy farmers but switched to raising beef cattle after they retired. His parents raised the youngstock for his grandparents and had horses.
For a high school FFA project, Logan started an egg business. He had about 300 laying hens and sold eggs locally and at markets.
Although Logan and Amber grew up near each other, they met through mutual friends while attending the Barron County Fair during high school. While in college, they reconnected. They soon began dating and this October, the couple will have been married four years and now have a one-and-half-year-old daughter, Evelynn.
In November 2016, Logan and Amber bought Havin Hills Rolling Acres from Logan’s grandparents. Since then, the couple has made a lot of changes to the farm.
“It is amazing how far our farm has come over the past five years,” Amber said. “We have grown our herd of cattle from about 15 to about 80 head.”
They also added many different animals throughout the years. They raise chickens including broilers and laying hens, turkeys, beef cattle and one dairy cow. They also have raised pigs and goats.
The Dwyers began direct marketing their beef, chicken and turkeys to consumers directly from the farm.
“The thing we love most about direct marketing our products is knowing our customers are getting a great product every time they stop in, along with getting to teach people about farming,” said Amber.
The Dwyers also have the added benefit of knowing they are getting a fair price on their product and knowing the animal is well taken care of. The Dwyers are grateful that an animal they have raised will help feed their customers’ families.
Amber added, “It is satisfying having consumers choose products grown and raised on our farm and receiving positive feedback such as, ‘This is the most tender steak I have ever had.’”
The Dwyers admit that working directly with customers comes with challenges. The biggest challenge is finding the ideal customer. The Dwyers use Facebook marketing, which can sometimes be problematic. They also find some people think their prices are expensive, which provides some frustration knowing how much it costs to raise an animal and get it processed.
Despite the challenges, the Dwyers want to keep growing their direct marketing business. They want to sell more turkeys for Thanksgiving and offer turkey breasts and ground turkey year-round.
The couple is working with another farmer to ship their products. The Dwyers provide beef, turkey and chicken while the other farmer offers pork and chicken. This partnership allows customers to do a one-stop-shop for all their meat and have it shipped directly to their door.
Logan and Amber work off the farm in addition to their responsibilities on the farm. Amber feeds the chickens, turkeys and cattle. She does the direct marketing, along with the farm’s bookwork. Logan works with the cattle and the crops. He also does custom seed cleaning.
Amber and Logan joined Farm Bureau to be more active within their local and agricultural communities. Logan was a member of Collegiate Farm Bureau at UW-River Falls and when the couple moved back to Barron County, they joined Barron County Farm Bureau.
Story originally appeared in the June |July 2021 Rural Route. Story by Lynn Siekmann, photos by Cassie Sonnentag.
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