Meet Cole Eschete of the Rock Creek FFA Chapter, the Southeast District Star FarmerThu, 27 Apr 2017 05:38:52 CDT
During the month of April, the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network and Oklahoma Farm Report is spotlighting the twenty District Stars of Oklahoma FFA that are among the highest achievers in the organization. The stars come from the five districts in four categories- Star in Ag Placement, Star in Agriscience, Star in Agribusiness and Star in Production Agriculture. Last week, we spotlighted the five district stars in Agribusiness- this week we move on to the Production Agriculture Stars for 2017.
We continue our coverage today with the Southeast District Star in Production Agriculture, Cole Eschete of the Rock Creek FFA Chapter from Bokchito, Oklahoma. Over the years, Eschete has built up a successful show pig business, selling his hogs to fellow FFA and 4-H members to help them start their own Supervised Agricultural Experiences. As a third-generation rancher, Eschete grew up around cattle, but after joining the FFA, began his SAE with hog production.
“My SAE today looks really good,” he said. “I sell show pigs to other FFA and 4-H members for them to be able to show, and I also raise steers for local markets.”
He says production agriculture has always been a part of his life. Growing up, raising livestock is something he’s always wanted to be involved with.
“How I started really was just, when I was little, I saw my cousins doing it,” Eschete remembered. “That was something I wanted to do. Just through trial and error over the years, it’s been something I grew a passion about and I really love it.”
Raising his pigs has taught Eschete a lot about livestock production. He says the key to his success has really been founded in his operation’s breeding program. But then, he adds, you have to finish them out with the right nutrition program as well.
“You have to get the right genetics, the right maternal and father traits to get everything right in the end,” he said. “Once you get the pigs on the ground, you have to do the whole feeding process, make sure they are getting the right things to grow, especially for the show industry.”
And when it comes to marketing the animals he is raising, Eschete says he relies on his network of friends and acquaintances.
“I know a lot of people in the show pig deal, especially in Oklahoma,” he said. “Just knowing a lot of people and having lots of friends that kind of help me out and get a good one in their hands.”
Throughout his FFA career, Eschete has participated in speech contests, livestock judging, proficiency contests, not to mention his show hog operation. Upon graduation, he plans to attend Oklahoma State University and earn a doctorate in swine genetics and nutrition.
You can hear his entire conversation with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays, by clicking or tapping on the LISTEN BAR below.
A complete list of the District Stars can be seen on the Oklahoma FFA website by clicking or tapping here.
Our salute of the 2017 District Stars of the Oklahoma FFA is brought to you by American Farmers & Ranchers, proud to support Oklahoma’s youth. Visit the AFR website by clicking or tapping here to learn more on how AFR supports the young people of Oklahoma, and how AFR can provide you with quality insurance for your home, auto, farm, and life.
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