John and Betty Jaeger
In 1974, John and Betty Jaeger of Red Wing, MN were married. They began milking cows while renting Betty’s mother’s farm. In 1976, their barn burned down and they quit milking. Three years later, they bought Betty’s mother’s farm, and built a new dairy barn where they milked, raised hogs, and had some cattle. Later, the Jaeger’s took advantage of the federal dairy buy-out and started a beef herd along with hogs. Currently, they have 55 beef cows and feed out about 135 steers annually. They also farm 750 acres of corn, soybeans, barley, and hay in the Mississippi River bluffs area. They have made a number of conservation improvements to their farm including a pond that is used to control erosion. They have also changed the contour of some hillsides to allow contour farming on the hilliest land.
John and Betty have four children, Elizabeth, Nathan, Michael, and Patrick. None of the children are actually farming partners, but they help out as needed. However, Nathan does farm some land with John. All of the children live nearby. In the community, John and Betty are involved with their church. Betty works at Red Wing High School as a Special Education Aide. John is active in the Goodhue Lions Club. He is also a Goodhue County Soil and Water District Supervisor where he led the effort to create the Wells Creek Watershed Partnership in hopes to preserve a local designated trout stream.