Dallas, Wis., farmer Andy Bensend’s hand was forced. A casualty of the grim 1980s farm economy, Bensend filed bankruptcy in 1986. While difficult, the decision allowed Bensend to reinvent himself as a farmer.
“I knew I had to be lean. I had a tractor, planter and sprayer,” Bensend said. “It was driven out of necessity, but I learned I could do well without spending a lot, which drove the cost of production down.”