YOUNG PERSON IN AG: CHRISTOPHER FLOOD

I had the opportunity to meet Christopher Flood last year as we entered our first year at Lake Land College in Mattoon, IL. At first glance, Christopher is a very quiet reserved guy, incredibly smart, and genuinely a nice person to be around. As we have gotten to know each other more and more I find it fascinating to listen to him, as he knows a lot about various aspects of agriculture. I sat down with Christopher after class one day to talk about being a 6th generation farmer, a student, and a young person in the agriculture industry.

  1. Tell me a little bit about your family’s operation and what you guys do?

We run a 1300-acre corn/soybean/wheat crop operation along with 3000 wean-to-finish hog operation and 400 head Holstein and Jersey steer operation. We used to be a farrow-to-finish operation but because of disease and some other factors, we decided to become a wean-to-finish. We found it was cheaper to buy weaned pigs than to treat all the sick ones. Feed for our steers is a silage ration and for the hogs, we grind bulk loads and put in some supplement packs.

  1. What is your major and where will you be transferring to?

I am currently an Agriculture Transfer Student at Lake Land College. After Lake Land, I plan to transfer to Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and major in either Crop Science or Soil Science.

  1. What is your dream job?

My goal is to be an Agronomist for a Seed Company or the USDA.

  1. Did you or do you still have some mentor(s)?

My uncles and my dad definitely have given me a lot of insight in different areas of agriculture and life.

  1. In the terms of age of Agriculture, we are very young people, but do you remember anything that really changed agriculture in any way?

Whenever I hear my grandpa, dad, or uncles talk about changes in agriculture the first thing I hear is 2012…meaning the drought of 2012. I was still a kid, but I remember it not being a good, profitable year. Other changes I have seen especially lately are the changes in machinery and GPS usage in machinery.

  1. How do you see the agriculture industry changing in the next 5-10 years?

There’s probably going to be a huge focus in technology, more than what we have already. Drones and better field mapping will happen. There are going to be larger farms with fewer farmers doing it.

  1. Do you have any advice for younger people in agriculture or thinking about agriculture as a career?

Work hard, know there is a lot of room for movement if you want to work for it. Know that if college is not your thing there are jobs that require as little as a certificate all the way up to 8+ years of schooling. So, see what fits with you.

Lacie Butler
Lake Land College

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