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Fendt Lodge creates ag experience in Minnesota

SLIDESHOW: Jackson plant is the brand’s official home in North America.

Kevin Schulz, Editor

May 7, 2024

8 Slides

The Fendt flag has firmly been planted in southern Minnesota.

The Agco plant in Jackson is now the home of the Fendt brand, and Nick Farfsing said that is intentional — with the location in the heart of the Corn Belt.

Farfsing, the Fendt director of marketing for North America, was one of many Fendt and Agco team members on hand May 1 to mark the opening of the Fendt Lodge, a customer experience center which aims to become the brand’s center for customer visits, launch events, dealer meetings, factory tours and corporate gatherings.

Fendt has a long history, with origins in Marktoberdorf, Germany, and was purchased by Agco in 1997. The Jackson plant produces track tractors and Rogator models. In addition to Jackson, Minn., Fendt also has U.S. plants in Hesston, Kan., and Beloit, Kan.

Fendt Lodge’s grand opening was more than a celebration just for the Fendt brand — it was an event that brought out local, state and national representation. But most importantly, according to Eric Hansotia, chairman, president and CEO of Agco Corp., it is a celebration of and for farmers.

“We really appreciate all of our farmers that are here to help celebrate today. It’s really because of you that we built this Fendt brand home right here. None of this would have been possible without you,” Hansotia said. “You are the pioneers in the industry. You’ve had the courage and the foresight and the leadership to experiment and to try the Fendt brand.”

Farfsing envisions the Fendt Lodge, which is connected to the Jackson factory, to become a destination for travels along Interstate 90. It’s also north of Lake Okoboji, just across the border in Iowa.

“This space is all about education,” he said; “the opportunity to learn about Fendt, learn about the problems we solve for farmers. We see it also as a great opportunity to learn from farmers.”

Visitors to the Fendt Lodge can also experience “the factory — to see what a world-class factory looks like, experience the Fendt brand with a number of interactive displays and simulators so you can be behind the wheel of Fendt equipment, or you can even take a test drive on the test track,” Farfsing said.

He also sees the Fendt Lodge as a place to build community “as a place for us, our employees, for our dealers and for our farmers to come together as a community — and learn and grow together.”

Building the community is already in place as Farfsing said about 8,000 visitors annually pay a visit to the Jackson Agco plant, and “with the lodge, we hope to see 12,000 to 15,000 on an annual basis to come through.”

Check out this slideshow to experience the Fendt Lodge grand opening.

About the Author(s)

Kevin Schulz

Editor, The Farmer

Kevin Schulz joined The Farmer as editor in January of 2023, after spending two years as senior staff writer for Dakota Farmer and Nebraska Farmer magazines. Prior to joining these two magazines, he spent six years in a similar capacity with National Hog Farmer. Prior to joining National Hog Farmer, Schulz spent a long career as the editor of The Land magazine, an agricultural-rural life publication based in Mankato, Minn.

During his tenure at The Land, the publication grew from covering 55 Minnesota counties to encompassing the entire state, as well as 30 counties in northern Iowa. Covering all facets of Minnesota and Iowa agriculture, Schulz was able to stay close to his roots as a southern Minnesota farm boy raised on a corn, soybean and hog finishing farm.

One particular area where he stayed close to his roots is working with the FFA organization.

Covering the FFA programs stayed near and dear to his heart, and he has been recognized for such coverage over the years. He has received the Minnesota FFA Communicator of the Year award, was honored with the Minnesota Honorary FFA Degree in 2014 and inducted into the Minnesota FFA Hall of Fame in 2018.

Schulz attended South Dakota State University, majoring in agricultural journalism. He was also a member of Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity and now belongs to its alumni organization.

His family continues to live on a southern Minnesota farm near where he grew up. He and his wife, Carol, have raised two daughters: Kristi, a 2014 University of Minnesota graduate who is married to Eric Van Otterloo and teaches at Mankato (Minn.) East High School, and Haley, a 2018 graduate of University of Wisconsin-River Falls. She is married to John Peake and teaches in Hayward, Wis. 

When not covering the agriculture industry on behalf of The Farmer's readers, Schulz enjoys spending time traveling with family, making it a quest to reach all 50 states — 47 so far — and three countries. He also enjoys reading, music, photography, playing basketball, and enjoying nature and campfires with friends and family.

[email protected]

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