December 2019 SFG Update

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General Manager

Business Manager


Max Smith Email:

Sharon Smith Email:

Ashley Basset Email:

Grain Merchandiser

Energy, IT, & Feed Manager

Agronomy Manager

Mark White Email:

Kyle Smith Email:

Charles Smith Email:

Knoxville Main Office

Pleasantville Location

Centerville Location

Albia Location

1650 Quebec St Knoxville, IA 50138

702 E. Jasper Pleasantville, IA 50228

1605 S. 24th St Centerville, IA 52544

805 Hwy 5 North Albia, IA 52531

Office: 641-828-8500 Toll-Free: 800-828-5005

Office: 515-848-5000 Toll-Free: 800-586-5005

Office: 641-856-2828 Toll-Free: 866-856-5303

Office: 641-932-2100 Toll-Free: 877-932-5005

Knoxville City Location

Melcher-Dallas Location

Milo Location

Columbia Fuel Station

601 N. Sherman St Knoxville, IA 50138

126 2nd St SE Melcher-Dallas, IA 50163

101 1st St Milo, IA 50166

2441 Hwy 14 Columbia, IA 50057

Office: 641-842-5511

Office: 641-947-2000

Office: 641-942-6223

Cell: 641-218-4035

Mark White Harvest is finally winding down in our area. It has been a year most of us would like to forget as it seems we struggled all year to raise a crop. For most producers in our trade area yields were decent though not record breaking. Some had what they thought was their best bean yields ever, certainly a result of a mild and wet August. Corn yields were all over the board with planting dates, field drainage, and the amount of nitrogen loss being the largest variables. One common theme connected all producers, low prices. This past year we bought the smallest amount of new crop grain in the 12 years I have been involved with grain here at SFG. We weren’t alone. The entire industry experienced the same issues we saw locally. The

trade wars along with overproduction the past couple of years had led us to below cost of production prices. Hindsight can be both enlightening and aggravating. Most years we see at least 2 opportunities that we can use to price new crop grain. This past year we only saw 1 chance for corn sales, and nothing really sticks out on the bean side. Late last May you could have priced some fall delivered corn into our elevators in the 3.95 to 4.05 range. It only lasted a week and few farmers took advantage of it. They had several reasons not to including a late planting season and the notion a lot of acres would go unplanted. However, starting with the June crop report, the USDA put out a lot of numbers that didn’t make sense and was contrary with what we were hearing from producers, especially those from the eastern corn belt. As a matter of fact, they have continued to kick this can down the road and now it appears they may finally “properly” adjust these numbers in their January reports. Opportunities to sell new crop beans at a profitable level was almost non existent this past year. The best prices were achieved in late January, but they were sub 9.00. Now we have many producers with a lot of unpriced grain from this year’s harvest and nothing on the books for the 2020 harvest. (Cont, Page 2)

SFG Update

Page 2

So will the person with all the answers please stand and enlighten the rest of us. I don’t see anyone standing so we will have to tackle this ourselves. First, it will take several items happening all at once to send corn above 4 and beans above 9. This would include a Chinese agreement, bad South American weather, and a highly bullish January USDA report. Since this is unlikely, we need to look at what we can do until things turn around. End users have tightened their basis levels for corn and beans as farmers have been slow sellers. We need to take advantage of 5 or 10 cent board bumps and move some 2019 grain. We also need to monitor new crop prices between now and planting and sell 20% of the 2020 crop if break even or better prices are offered. Another 20% sould be sold if planting delays occur or the SA crop has trouble. Finally, 20% should be priced during any summer weather issues. Follow this and you have 60 percent of your crop sold before harvest. This will give you some piece of mind heading into harvest and allow you to pay your harvest bills and put money toward the next years inputs.

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SFG Update

Charles Smith Agronomy Manager

Charles Smith Agronomy Manager

It sure has been a long drawn out fall. It seemed like it was never going to dry up enough to apply NH3. It finally did though. We did have a short window to get the Nh3 applied. We had a total of 11 days that we applied Nh3. Now we can get the equipment ready for the spring run. We did run Nh3 through the new locations and they have all worked very well. We have purchased 30 new single 1450 Nh3 wagons for the new locations. Between the new wagons and what we already have should be enough to service these new locations. We will have Nh3 bars

available too. We have 13 knife DMI to 19 knife DMI bars available. If you are wanting a no-till application, we pull that with our custom tractors. Dry fertilizer and super grow are being applied now. We have had a good run on dry fertilizer this fall. We have about 60% of the fall fertilizer on and 25% of the super grow on. We need to keep the snow away so we can keep applying. We are getting ready for our winter open houses. We will have an open house at Centerville, Milo and Melcher this year. Centerville is Dec 17, Milo Dec 18, and Melcher is Dec 19. We will be serving soup and sandwiches. We do this as a thank you and to go over spring prepay prices. We like to give out prices and programs so that farmers can start planning for their spring needs.