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Partners at Hardwick Planting Company, Newellton, LA

Mead and Marshall are partners with their parents, Jay and Mary Hardwick, at Hardwick Planting Company located on the family’s Somerset Plantation in Tensas Parish. Mead obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, and Marshall obtained a Bachelor of Agriculture Business and a Masters of Science in the School of Plant, Environmental, and Soil Sciences from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA. Both are currently in The Louisiana Master Farmer Program.

Hardwick Planting Company farms approximately 9,000 acres of cotton, corn, soybeans, wheat, and sorghum on Somerset’s 20,000 acres. The Hardwick family has been extensively involved with conservation and restoration efforts in the area for many years. Almost 500 acres have been removed from agriculture production and restored to their natural existence along with the continued preservation of 3,000 more acres. In addition, approximately 6,000 acres of hardwood timberland are maintained which provide habitat for the Louisiana black bear.

The Hardwicks firmly believe it is crucial to combine productive agricultural operations with maximum natural resource protection and a comprehensive conservation plan for the farm. They have implemented conservation practices and systems such as extensive crop rotation, minimum tillage, filter strips and wetland restoration and preservation. Hardwick Planting Company was recently awarded the 2015 National Wetlands Award for Landowner Stewardship for their effort of blending production agriculture and conservation.

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