Red River Valley Sugarbeet Industry Oral History Project: Interview with Dr. Alan Dexter
BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION: Alan Dexter was born May 24, 1941 in Central City, Nebraska and grew up on a farm. He completed his B.S. and M.S. degrees at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. In 1969 he received a Ph.D. in agronomy, emphasis on weed science, from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. After completing his doctorate he went to work at North Dakota State University in March 1969, where he was a member of the Department of Crop and Weed Sciences. He was hired to do applied research on weed control of sugar beets, as well the extension activities of bringing the information to the farmers. His job was a new position that the farmers had been requesting. At the time of the interview he was spending 90% of his work time in the field and 10% in the lab. SUBJECTS DISCUSSED: How is position is financed through the cooperation of Minnesota and North Dakota state governments and farmers; differences between Nebraska and North Dakota farming; the testing of new herbicides and refining of older herbicides; how test plots are found and utilized; research facilities of the sugar companies themselves; the establishment of the Sugar Beet Research and Education Board of Minnesota and North Dakota in February 1975; the value of the Sugar Beet Institute and sugar beet educational seminars; the high interest the farmers have in these educational opportunities; the Growers' Idea Contest; the American Society of Sugar Beet Technologists (ASSBT) and his involvement with them; the ASSBT as a non-political, scientific group; initial resistance to sugar beet research efforts by sugar companies; early weed problems and how they were resolved through education and research; how various weeds such as green and yellow foxtail, wild oats and redroot pigweed have been attacked by various herbicides; monitoring the fields for illegal uses of non-sugar beet-approved herbicides; certification requirements for farmers who use pesticides; Dexter's invention of the use of split-application herbicides; the importance of progressive thinking to the success of sugar beet farming in the Red River Valley.
35 pages transcript
Content Category: text
Interviewee: Dexter, Alan
Interviewer: Shoptaugh, Terry L.
Made in: Moorhead, Clay County, Minnesota, United States
|Holding Type||Oral History - Interview|
OH 40 (Library Call Number)
AV2000.37.5 (Accession Number)
MNHS Library Catalog
Oral History - Project, MHS Collection, project: 'Red River Valley Sugarbeet Industry Oral History Project'