Kovar Machinery

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I nominate Kovar Harrows/Kovar Machinery, now Kovar Sales, Inc., for inclusion in to the MN 150 because of the long-term impact on Minnesota agriculture throughout the 20th- and into the 21st-century. The Kovar Company began in 1914 when Joseph Kovar, a farmer in the Owatonna area, devised a new type of spring-tooth harrow that could remove quack grass from row crops. This new equipment allowed farmers to finally beat back this invading perennial scourge of crop fields---quack grass. Farmers throughout Minnesota quickly added a Kovar harrow to their operations.

Equipment, such as the various Kovar harrows developed and marketed throughout the 20th-century, helped farmers cultivate more acres and be more productive on each acre. As new chemical-resistant crops began to come into use (Round-up-Ready corn and beans) the demand for harrows forced the company into yet new product lines---developing equipment for the emerging organic farming trade. For over 90 years, a small manufacturing company, first started in Owatonna, now operating in Anoka, has been developing and selling farm equipment needed by dairy, crop and now organic farmers---impacting everyday Minnesotans through the food they eat.
~Bob Quist, Elk River, MN


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