Lucas Lentsch

The South Dakota Agricultural Foundation has announced the establishment of an endowment fund within the South Dakota Community Foundation. The focus is on investing in the future of the ag industry in the state. Initial partners have committed $1.5 million to this effort over the next five years. South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch and Stephanie Judson, president of the SD Community Foundation, join Midday to talk about the endowment … its genesis, its goals, and its potential impact on family farmers/producers throughout the state.

Every Wednesday we invite some of the top political reporters in the state to discuss the nimble nuances of South Dakota politics. Today, we welcome Jon Hunter, publisher of the Madison Daily Leader, and Roger Whittle, managing editor of the Watertown Public Opinion.

Today the Political Junkies illuminate a rather dramatic week in the state capitol. From resignations to protests to a hint of success in the quest to raise teacher pay … the Dakota Political Junkies are here to help you make sense of it all.

Ag Secretary Plans To Resign

Feb 23, 2016
South Dakota State Government

The South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture says he’s leaving the position at the end of next month.

Lucas Lentsch has served as the state’s Agriculture Secretary since April of 2013.   He is leaving state government for a job in the private sector.  

Governor Dennis Daugaard praises Lentsch for his service.

Officials with Governor Dennis Daugaards office say a search for a replacement is starting immediately.

Kealey Bultena / SDPB

Farmers and ranchers in South Dakota must decide whether to save the money they make from crops and livestock or reinvest it. The growing season is well underway for South Dakota farmers, and ranchers are watching markets as they raise their animals. 

Record commodity prices for corn and soybeans are gone, and that has some farmers keeping their money in the bank instead of spending it on upgrades and new equipment. South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch says growers remain cautious.

State of South Dakota

Summer is a time of furious work in South Dakota. Farming and ranching ramp up as the weather warms, and 2015 is no exception. But growing crops and raising livestock comes with risk. Kealey Bultena spoke with South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture Lucas Lentsch for an update on the latest concerns of the state's farmers and ranchers. Lentsch began the conversation by discussing the latest round of heavy rains after a spring that started with fears of a season hindered by drought.

Agriculture Leads South Dakota's Economic Growth

Jun 17, 2014
South Dakota State Government

On Wednesday, Governor Dennis Daugaard's office released a statement that said, "South Dakota's economy continues to grow at a faster rate than the national economy, according to the most recent gross domestic product (GDP) numbers released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce." The statement said South Dakota's GDP grew 6.8 percent from 2012-2013, compared to a national increase of 3.47 percent. This economic growth was led by South Dakota's agricultural sector, which rebounded from a drought year in 2012 to post a 34 percent increase this year.