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Published: Tuesday, 1/11/2011

Corn, wheat growers' groups in Ohio merge

The Ohio Wheat Growers Association has merged with the Ohio Corn Growers Association to create a group that organizers say will be an even more powerful lobbying force.

The Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association officially came into being last week and is being led by Dwayne Siekman, who was executive director of both groups.

The group has 2,500 members statewide, he said, and its president will be Mark Wachtman, who has led the wheat group.

Ohio is the nation's No. 7 grower of corn and its largest producer of soft red winter wheat, typically used in cakes, cookies, and crackers. About 10 percent of Ohio's farmland is planted in wheat. Ohio's corn crop last year was valued at $2.7 billion, and the value of the state's wheat crop was about $350 million.

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