A Dream Fulfilled

35 years and counting

Published online: Jun 14, 2010 Feature Jason Harris, Publisher
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As the first issue of Sugar Producer magazine rolled off the press in 1975, a small dream of a relatively new businessman was realized.

Though visions existed in the minds of those involved with the inaugural issue, I doubt many of them guessed it would develop into what it is today- a respected trade journal for the national sugarbeet industry currently celebrating 35 years in business.

Allow me to sound our own horn for just a minute, or better yet, sound the horn of the great people who have made this possible.
The idea to launch this magazine belongs to company founder Darryl Harris. In 1971 he started Harris Publishing in the basement of his home by publishing a regional magazine for horse and cutter racing.

Shortly after, he launched Potato Grower magazine, then Sugar Producer, then Snowmobile West, and so on. The rest is history. Today Harris publishes over 15 titles. Darryl is currently retired and enjoying a well-deserved life of fun and relaxation, but the publishing business carries on.

Looking back over the 35 years, several people stand out as having played a key role in this magazine's success, most notably Steve Janes, Janet Chase, Mel Erickson, Richard Holley and Gary Rawlings. A special salute to these five, as well as countless others, who have made and continue to make this magazine possible.

The magazine also recognizes Luther Markwart, Ruthann Geib and the staff at ASGA for their immeasurable support and assistance. Their service to this industry is increasingly valuable and we appreciate the time and effort given to us.

Since its inception, close to 350 issues have been published, which works out to be nearly 20,000 pages. That is a lot of writing and designing. But more importantly, that is a lot of reading, which leads me to you, our readers. We regularly receive comments about our publication and we appreciate the feedback, whether good or bad.

We also thank those who chose us to be the means to advertise their product. We certainly could not have made it without your support. The idea from the beginning was to publish a trade magazine and mail it for free to every grower in the country. That decision has not changed. This magazine still reaches every grower in the United States for free.

Most recently we have launched a companion website, www.sugarproducermagazine.com, and will soon publish our magazine in a digital format as well as continue in the printed form.
We are grateful for being able to be a part of this industry. What a wonderful group of people we have come to know. While we hope our magazine has benefited this industry in some way, there is not doubt this industry has made our company better.

Hopefully, the light will shine on us in the future as brightly as it has in the past. Again, thanks to several great staff members, both past and present, for their contributions, and thanks to you as industry friends.
I feel the accomplishments and life of this magazine have surpassed Darryl's dream. Now it is time to realize and surpass our own. Here's to another 35 years.

Editor's note: Harris is the publisher of Sugar Producer magazine and president of Harris Publishing. He can be contacted through email at Jason@harrispublishing.com