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All Season Greens

Pig tails

4:14 PM  Feb 22nd, 2013
by Michelle Tedford

In Iowa, there are famously fat pigs that are about to get a bit more famous. And riding on their pigtails is David Oberst ’90.

Oberst is likely to have a bit part on the Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods 9 p.m. (EST) Monday. Host Andrew Zimmern drools over the Iowa Swabian Hall pigs raised on fresh greens grown hydroponically in Oberst’s portable or on-site trailers.

Oberst, who runs All Season Greens, has since last summer been working with farmers nationwide to provide high-nutrient, low-cost feed for their livestock. Farmer Carl Blake feeds his famous pigs from two on-site units that grow a ton of feed a day for $120 a ton, versus $400 a ton for traditional dry feed like corn or soy.

But it’s not just the pigs that love the greens. Quarter million-dollar mares in Texas dine on alfalfa from All Season Greens. Oberst fed Zimmern a green salad mix sprouted in one of his units. Oberst also sprouts his own sunflower greens, wheatgrass and barley grass, which he uses to supplement his already healthy diet.

“I drink a blended greens smoothie every day for my health, so [Zimmern and I] were doing shots of that,” he said of last summer’s TV filming session.

All Season Greens is a UD affair and includes brother Matt Oberst ’86 in R&D, brothers Jeff ’88 and Tom Oberst ’80 as owner/members, and friend Roi Qualls ’86 as CFO and head of IT.

They’re all proud of the exposure they’ll get come Monday, but they are uncertain what shots will end up on the air. And David Oberst is a little uncertain from where he’ll watch the show.

His place of choice would be the brown Lay-Z-Boy recliner at home in Montana, with his wife in her matching seat, both 10 feet away from the big-screen TV. But he can’t. “We don’t watch much TV,” he says; they canceled their cable package and don’t even get the Travel Channel.

So he’ll likely watch it with brother Jeff and family in Dallas, or he might travel to Missouri Dairy Farm and watch the show with another member of the company.

Keep in mind the phrase “happy as a pig in mud” when you see him on your screen.

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