We’ve got some great photos in the IL Corn library – photos that speak volumes about what we do and who we are as an organization as well as who the farmers are that we serve! This week, we’ll feature a few of those photos as well as share the lessons you can glean from them!

Congressman Quigley on the Farm

quigley on farm1.  In this photo, Congressman Mike Quigley (IL-5) visited the farm to learn more about the primary industry in Illinois.  Congressman Quigley does this very cool “Undercover Congressman” program where he visits Illinoisans and tries to learn more about even the most menial jobs in our state.  I think it shows a real desire to learn – and we couldn’t have been happier to let him farm for a day

2. Connecting Illinois farmers, IL Corn staff, and elected officials is one very important job that IL Corn performs for its members.  As voters, every single American would do well to make at least one connection a year with the people that represent them!  That priority gets lost in the busyness of all of our days – so one job of our association is to help our members connect with elected officials and help elected officials understand as much about farming as possible.

3. The Congressman is standing in front of the machine that harvests corn – called a combine.  A combine is a VERY expensive piece of equipment (just under $500,000!) that a farmer simply can’t do without!  Learn more about combines here.

4. Congressman Quigley was likely shocked to learn about the very technical nature of a modern combine.  Combines monitor yield per acre, utilize GPS to minimize fuel usage and maximize efficiency, and employ a ton of other modern conveniences to make U.S. farming the most efficient food and fuel production industry in the world.

5. As farmer Steve Ruh was harvesting this field in October 2015, he was likely making around 200 bushels per acre.  (A bushel is about the size of a large bag of dog food and an acre is about the size of a football field.)  In October 1980, this same field would have yielded only about 100 bushels per acre.


We are glad to be back from the holidays and look forward to what the new year brings for us.

To start us off right, here is a recipe that is a must try this season.

This recipe is for Corn Chowder, which is plentiful in the summer when fresh sweet corn is in season. But on cold nights, sometimes you just want to have a bowl of delicious hot soup, specifically corn chowder. Corn Chowder

This recipe is tailored to using frozen corn instead of fresh corn right off of the cob. Corn

The total cooking time, with preparation, is between 30 minutes and 60 minutes.  The corn chowder recipe should serve 4 to 6 people, varying with the serving bowl size you use.  If you are going shopping, here are the short-lists.

  • Ingredients
  • 5 to 6 cups of frozen, whole kernel corn
  • 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh thyme
  • 1 white onion
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 slices of bacon
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 cups water
  • 3/4 pound red potatoes
  • 1 cup of either half-and-half or heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • freshly chopped basil

And the supplies …

  • Supplies
  • Dutch Oven
  • Wooden or silicone stirring spoon
  • 5 bowls for prepared ingredients
  • Cutting board and knives
  • Whisk

To see the full instructions, click here.