A publication from Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC
WHAT’S NEW AT MRGA TECHNOLOGY: MRC, YOUR ISP AGRONOMY ARTICLES SEED NEWS & GRAIN UPDATES CREDIT REPORT & MUCH MORE!
FROM THE DESK OF
D E PA R T M E N T S
OUR GENERAL MANAGER
4 The last year went by fast! I would like to thank our patrons and employees for another great year. Without your support, the coop would not be as successful as it is today. As we move into 2016, there are currently no new projects on the horizon. However, with all things, that can change if the right opportunity arises. Our goal is to continue to provide fast, efficient services in a safe manner. Planning ahead and communicating with our sales staff this spring and fall will be crucial to help us provide you with the service you have come to expect. One of the newest services that will be available this spring is a GPS tracking system. This allows our staff to track spraying and spreading progress in your field so that we can better communicate with our patrons when fields have been started and completed. Feel free to contact your agronomist for further details on this. Once again, thank you for your past business and we look forward to continuing that relationship this year and on. With our successful year, Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC will be paying out patronage through our parent companies- Chaffee Lynchburg Farmers Elevator and Prosper Farmers Cooperative Elevator in the upcoming months. Have a safe and productive spring!
Casselton Location (800) 568-5402 (701) 347-4465 Grandin Location (701) 484-5293 Leonard Location (701) 645-2334 Lynchburg Location (701) 347-5487 Peak Location (701) 845-3975 Prosper Location (701) 282-4094
Maple River Communications (701) 347-0089
- General Manager
BO T TO M LI NE
IN THIS ISSUE
Published quarterly by: Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC. 1630 1st Ave S, Casselton, ND 58012.
Introducing Maple River Insurance Services MRGA is pleased to offer a new avenue to serve the producer by helping them make quality decisions for their farming operation.
Casselton Elevator Mark Stevens Jamie Mann Management Team Steven Horst John Duff Kim Nehring Keri DeVries Mike Flaten Alex Richard Casselton Fertilizer Mac Johnson Casselton Office Bob Breiland Brian Nelson Jeremy Rolf Casselton Shop Braeden Nelson Todd Affield Jon Ellingson Mark Pueppke Kevin Lahlum Ben Christopherson Casselton Trucking Mike Weed Joe Eberhardt Nancy Hagen Andy Boyer Kim Koetz Kevin Erickson Emily Neels Travis Forderer Marilyn Prochnow Merle Myers Ashley Coles Chet Garrison Grant Phipps CEO Terry Johnson
Casselton Warehouse Christian Owen Chris Wilke Peak Location Tim Dean Daniel Ryan
Maple River Communications Steven Schneider Cindy Jensen Jon Rohlik Adam Freeman MRGA Board of Directors Brian McDonald- President Mike Nelson- Vice President Laurie Krone- Secretary Doug Brown Don Woodburn Brent Rust Russell Ruliffson Mark Belter Jon Watt
Grandin Location Cory Aasen Connor Levorsen Prosper Location John Spiekermeier Mike Koetz Leonard Location Jeff Boisjolie Chad Johnson Lynchburg Location Tim Rose Steven Owen
This publication is provided free of charge to all local crop and livestock producers. If you are not receiving this publication and would like to be added to our mailing list please provide us with your address by calling our Casselton office at 1-800-568-5402. All rights reserved. ÂŠ 2016 Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC. Printed in the U.S.A. Layout and design by Candace Brekke.
S P RI NG 2016
Kim Koetz - Wellness Coordinator
MRGA WELLNESS Spring is in the air and the wellness committee is busy getting ready to keep our agronomy staff nourished during the busy fertilizer and planting season. Fresh fruit, string cheese, and bottled water will be made available for all staff to have as they are in and out on their way to the field. The MRGA wellness trek challenge was a huge success. We had 23 participants finish the 13½ hour challenge that took them to each one of our locations “virtually.” The trek started in Casselton, and proceeded to Lynchburg, Leonard, Chaffee, Peak, Grandin, Prosper and back to Casselton. The participants had 8 weeks to complete the challenge. We had 10 participants that finished the trek twice and 2 that finished it three times. Prizes were given along the way, which included Subway gift cards, duffle bags and Scheels gift cards. We had one lucky finisher who won the grand prize drawing of $500 to be redeemed in the form of club memberships, best buy electronics package, or a weekend getaway package. Congratulations to CINDY JENSEN! Cindy works in the Maple River Communications office in Lynchburg. We are excited to hear which prize she chooses.
Congratulations Cindy Jensen for winning the wellness trek grand prize drawing
BO T TO M LI NE
CoBank states, “Our program is designed to give directors and managers valuable knowledge, insight and information they can use every day in both their business and personal lives.”
Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC attended the Annual Meeting of AGP (Ag Processing Inc), a parent company to Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC in January 2016. The event was held in La Vista, NE over a two day period. In attendance were General Manager Terry Johnson, Accounting Assistant Emily Neels, and Grain Originator Jeremy Rolf. The meeting started out Thursday evening with an opening reception, which provided opportunities for networking and introductions. The meeting commenced on Friday morning with various speakers including Chad Hennings (ex-NFL Dallas Cowboys star & air force pilot), Kelli Vrla (CEO broadcast sales) , Naomi Blohm (market advisor), and Virgil Robinson (fundamental and technical analyst). Throughout the day, the financials were also reported and election of directors took place. The event finished with a dinner reception and entertainment by the country music band, Sawyer Brown. In addition to attending the Annual Meeting, Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC staff toured the AGP corporate office in Omaha, NE and met with the MRGA board representatives and AGP management staff.
COBANK REGIONAL CUSTOMER MEETING Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC attended the CoBank Regional Customer Meeting on March 31st and April 1st.The meeting was held at the Courtyard by Marriott in Moorhead, MN and is specifically designed for management staff and board of directors. The regional meeting provides fantastic presentations from leading experts on different areas such as public policy, economy, business management, and important industry trends. This year’s speakers included: • Erik Weihenmayer (World-Class Blind Adventurer) • Marci Rossell (Economist) • Bob Engel (CoBank CEO) • Charlie Cook (Editor and Publisher, “The Cook Political Report”) • Stanley McChrystal (former Commander of U.S. & International Forces in Afghanistan) Attendees learned: • Perspective on the 2016 presidential election from a renowned political analyst • Lessons on leadership from a top military commander • Key trends and dynamics that are shaping U.S. and global economies • Inspiration on harnessing the power of adversity and using it as fuel for greatness Source: http://www.cobank.com/Events-Meetings/CustomerMeetings/2016-North-Dakota-Customer-Meeting.aspx
CENTRAL CASS DOLLARS FOR SCHOLARS $5000.00 Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC is a proud supporter of the Central Cass school district. Whether it be through advertising the many sporting events in our district or the sponsorship of jackets for the FFA students, our company takes pride in our involvement in these various activities and the students these great programs benefit. In December, Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC endowed the Central Cass Dollars for Scholars program with $5,000.00 to be awarded as scholarship opportunities for students seeking post-secondary education. The funds were delivered to Jon Watt, volunteer board member for the Central Cass Dollars for Scholars non-profit organization. The importance of education beyond high school is important for the future development of our youth, workforce, and community. Through these various fundraising efforts, local dollars can support local students. Although graduation isn’t until May, we wish to extend an early message of congratulations to the class of 2016 and wish those students the best of success in their next adventures!
CASS COUNTY RURAL COMMUNITY EMERGENCY FOOD PANTRY $5000.00 Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC partnered with CoBank in their “Sharing Success” charitable matching grant program in 2015. CoBank is a national cooperative bank serving vital industries across the country with whom Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC is a customer of. The “Sharing Success” program made possible by CoBank is designed to “celebrate the vital role that CoBank customers play in individual communities across the country. Partnering with our customers to support worthy causes they care about is a great way for CoBank to make a positive difference and fulfill its mission of service to rural America.” CoBank invited its customers to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity and committed $3 million in 2015 to match eligible customer donations to a non-profit organization in their communities. After our application was submitted and approved, CoBank contributed $2,500.00 and Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC matched $2,500.00 to present a check to the Cass County Rural Community Emergency Food Pantry in Casselton on December 21st, 2015 for $5,000.00. CEO Robert Engel of CoBank stated,” Concern for community and cooperation among cooperatives are longstanding cooperative principles. Throughout rural America, cooperatives are working not only to provide value to their members but to improve the quality of life in their communities.” Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC was proud to join with CoBank in support of the food pantry needs in our community. The CCRCE Food Pantry is a non-profit organization serving those in need by providing grocery, personal, and household items. They are located in Casselton, ND. Pictured above from left are: Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC representatives: Emily Neels, Kim Koetz, and Alex Richard; along with Cass County Rural Community Emergency Food Pantry representatives: Bonnie Oberlander, Kari McLean, Shelle Palmer, and Jay Oberlander.
S P RI NG 2016
In January, Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC
provided the opportunity for Kim Koetz and Emily Neels to attend the fourth annual WILD Conference in Jamestown, ND. The WILD conference was formed to promote women in leadership development. The all women event was held at the North Dakota Farmers Union Conference Center January 13th-14th. The event is designed to
provide inspiration on various health, motivation, and happiness topics. Attendees started the event on Wednesday evening with their Ladies Night session featuring “Yoga on Tap” and shopping. On Thursday, the conference picked back up again with three speakers. Melanie Carvell, a native of Mott, ND was the first speaker for the event. She is a physical therapist and director of the Sanford Women’s Health Center in Bismarck, ND. She did a wonderful job of energizing and motivating the crowd first thing in the morning! As an accomplished triathlete, she shared her stories and tips from her book, “Running with the Antelope.” Her presentation encouraged women to focus on health; body and spirit, to lead a happier, healthier life. To put her words into action, she led the group in simple exercises to do at home or on the job to be a healthier, more active person. One of the biggest discussions for the group was the risk of sitting all day and how standing and moving periodically throughout the day can contribute to a much healthier lifestyle.
BO T TO M LI NE
The next speaker was Marji Guyler-Alaniz, founder of the FarmHer organization. The FarmHer organization focuses on the use of photography to promote and encourage women in agriculture. The organization was founded in 2013 and Marji encouraged attendees to follow your dreams and calling in life. She shared her life experiences and how that led her to start photographing women, which eventually led to the idea that women in agriculture often get overlooked and it was time to start shining a light on those who also play a huge role on the farm. WWW.FarmHer.com provides a gallery of images promoting women in agriculture and also enables a networking community for those women looking to connect across the U.S. In her presentation, we sampled some of her images and also learned about upcoming events with the organization- including a television show that will encourage dialog and further imagery opportunities for women in agriculture. The keynote speaker of the day was Ali Vincent, season 5 winner of “The Biggest Loser.” Ali shared her inspirational story as the first ever female winner of the show. In her presentation, she focused on her journey from a 234 pound woman to her goal weight of 122 pounds. Although she is primarily known for her weight loss journey, she is also a wellknown motivational speaker, television host, philanthropist, and author. Her mantra is “Believe it, Be It.” This ended up leading to a book publication where she shared with readers her journey, various weight loss tips, and advice on self-acceptance and positivity. Her commentary was both inspiring, real, and comical! She was full of energy and definitely spread the message of developing oneself and the lifelong commitment it takes to lead a healthy, happy life.
Sources: http://www.melaniecarvell.com/ http://farmher.com/ http://alivincent.com/
Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC is pleased to announce that as of January 1st, 2016 we have entered the crop insurance industry and will now be offering crop insurance as a new service for our clients. There are many cooperatives that have successfully implemented crop insurance as a business line and it is with great excitement that we are able to start offering this service. This is just another way that we are able to serve the producer and help them make quality decisions for their farming operation. The new insurance company will operate under the name Maple River Insurance Services and will be managed by Braeden Nelson, who also serves as the Credit Manager at Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC. Braeden is an experienced Ag banker / Crop Insurance Agent who has been a licensed crop insurance agent since September, 2010. Braeden worked as an Ag banker & Crop Insurance Agent in the Grand Forks, ND and Fergus Falls, MN markets prior to coming to work for Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC and he currently holds insurance licenses in both ND and MN. Braeden grew up on a family farm southwest of Valley City, ND and is familiar with a lot of farms within the Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC business area. As of the date of this newsletter, multi-peril crop insurance sales closing date for 2016 is behind us, but keep Maple River Insurance Services in mind for crop hail insurance over the summer months and multi-peril crop insurance in the future. Maple River Insurance Services is dedicated to meeting all your crop insurance needs, by providing superior service. We take the complexity out of crop insurance, making it clear, concise, and easy for you to understand. We have the technology in place to be a leader in the crop insurance industry. If you would like more information about Maple River Insurance Services contact Braeden Nelson at 701-347-4465 or send an email to email@example.com. S P RI NG 2016
MRC UPDATE Steven Schneider - Technology Manager
What makes Maple River Communications (MRC) a better choice for your Internet Service Provider (ISP)? MRC’s network starts with two fiber connections from two different companies located 20 miles apart. Both of these connections are used simultaneously, but if for some reason, one connection fails, all internet traffic is routed
Our connection to the internet is “multihomed” through the active connection. The transfer of network traffic during a connection failure is done seamlessly, without any human intervention, which equals no service interruptions. Has this been tested? Yes, three times we have experienced outages from one of our providers and our customer’s quality of service was not affected.
BO T TO M LI NE
MRC OWNS ITS IP ADDRESSES In order to be multihomed, an ISP must own or lease its IP addresses. By owning our own IP addresses, MRC is in a better position with our upstream providers and we can get better rates. This allows us to put more money back into the network. There are only a limited number of “v4” IP addresses and as of last September, there were not any more available in North America.
TOWERS We have dual connections to almost all our towers and they are setup with automatic failover. This allows your internet to continue to work in the event of a connection failure. This is another way the network is smarter.
POWER TO THE TOWER After identifying towers that have had past utility power problems, we deployed utility grade battery backup DC
power systems. These systems are able to notify us when power has been lost/returned from “the grid” and let us know when the batteries are low. Our primary sites have generators which start automatically when there is a utility power failure.
TESTING AND PLANNING Testing new technologies, concepts, and methods in our office prior to deployment has become common practice. After conducting internal testing, we discuss the potential pros and cons of implementing the changes or deploying the new equipment. This prevents potential problems with your service.
THE PEOPLE A dedicated team is necessary to have a smart network and we have a great team and get better after each solution we roll out.
Upon moving to Argusville, ND from Fargo; I was hesitant in finding a quality internet provider for the area. Maple River Communications has been providing good, fast internet speed which allows me to stream videos, play video games, and continue using the internet as I previously did “in town.” The customer service has been top notch, going above and beyond, handling any issues within minutes and offering quick, effective service for any questions I may have. Compared to other internet providers, Maple River Communications has been competitive in increasing internet speeds, without increasing costs. I am extremely happy with Maple River Communications and will continue to recommend them to anyone looking for a new internet provider.
Thanks again, Justin Saewert
If you call the office during normal business hours you will probably talk to Cindy. She will help you with your billing questions, getting set up for new internet service and will see that you get help with any internet service issues. If she cannot answer your questions, she will direct your call to one of our technicians or our technology manager. Cindy also maintains and orders all of the MRC inventory equipment and supplies.
Adam brings over 10 years of IT experience to MRC. Adam is focused on customer satisfaction and can think outside the box when it comes to complex internet installations and troubleshooting difficult connection problems. Adam has a passion for understanding all the intricacies of MRCs network and enjoys researching all aspects of the internet industry. Both our field techs have completed several hundred wireless installations and have perfected the process.
JON ROHLIK Installer/Service Technician
STEVEN SCHNEIDER Technology Manager
Jon brings 15 years of IT experience to MRC and has worked on this network for 4 years. He knows what works and what doesn’t and he is focused on customer satisfaction. Our customers enjoy working with him. Jon follows the WISP community closely to keep up with the most current information in the tech industry.
I have 22 years of computer network experience and have followed the ever evolving changes in internet technologies with excitement. My job is to stay on top of the changes for both the MRGA business network and the MRC internet system. To keep up-to-date I read a number
of trade publications and I attend conferences that offer information/training in the wireless internet provider industry. I have a philosophythat one should be deploying technology to fill a need and not deploying technology for the sake of technology. Both our field techs work with me on tower deployment, maintenance and repair. This gives us the advantage of more than one person understanding how the towers are setup if an emergency presents itself. MRC is focused on maintaining and improving our tower equipment and connections. Our employees are focused on providing our customers with the best possible internet connection. This is why MRC is a better choice and value when choosing an internet provider. A member of
S P RI NG 2016
Jeremy Rolf - Grain Originator
GRAIN UPDATE The supply side of the equation has put pressure on prices for several months now and record to near record South American production has capped any rallies in the futures market. The Continuous Daily Corn and Soybean Futures charts show we have been in a sideways pattern since late July- early August. The wheat futures chart is showing a similar pattern. The market is seriously lacking fresh news to trade. But by the time you read this, the market will get a few good doses of information with USDA supply and demand report, planting intentions, and spring weather forecasts. Corn Continuous Daily Bar Chart:
The good news is, demand remains strong for corn and soybeans.
Soybean Continuous Daily Bar Chart:
Looking forward, this is a very difficult market to trade as the market is essentially in equilibrium at these lower prices waiting for something to tip the scales one way or another. The market chatter continues to talk about old news that has little bearing on price action because it is already factored into the market e.g. large South American crop, large ending stocks, and weak export program. So with that being said, the market will be looking for price direction in the next couple of months from planting intentions and weather forecasts. Also, the funds continue to be short grain futures and have little to no risk premium built into the 16/17 new crop. In short, there is still risk to the downside if weather becomes favorable and stocks continue to build. The good news is, demand remains strong for corn and soybeans (moderate for wheat), and the funds will quickly change direction if they see any problems in new crop production. The best thing to do is to stay vigilant and be proactive in marketing as price rallies may be short lived. Please feel free to give Jeremy or Kim a call if you have any questions. We are glad to help with any marketing questions you may have or different contract options that we offer here at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC.
BO T TO M LI NE
#plant16 Jon Ellingson - Sales Agronomist
Urea has done it again! Once again, a slow decline in price over the winter season has been erased in a short timeframe just ahead of spring planting season. Demand in the southern states as planting season 2016 began, along with delayed imports and not enough domestic production to meet the flurry of delayed purchases, have tacked a $50-$60 increase back on the urea market. How long the increase will stay is our unknown at the time of this publication. We do see slightly lower numbers ($5 less) looking ahead to river open. However, we also see potential for an early planting season; which will pinch the timeframe to make river open work. Transportation will be tight and supply may be delayed if plants are not full ahead of the early season. We do presently see numbers into Jul-Aug that are lower again. Be prepared to take advantage of early order situations if necessary. Phosphates have been slightly soft for a while with only slight increases coming as of late. Newsworthy reporting would include that Mosaic has curbed phosphate production by 400,000 tons to help calm the slide in domestic prices. On the liquid phosphate side, products
like 10-34-0 have stayed relatively flat to stay with the dry market, but suppliers say that acid is tight and once demand kicks in, you will probably see pricing head up. Potash pricing is said to be at ten year lows. We know that profitability has shrunk; but at these price levels, now is not the time to skimp on potash applications. Ammonium sulfate pricing has remained relatively stable, but with urea increasing in price we may see some increases in AMS as well. The ammonia market did see a slight decrease, but bounced right back with a few purchases and the increase in the urea market. With lower commodity prices and what growers consider to be high fertilizer prices, it may be in your best interest to review NDSU Extension bulletin SF722 or even use the nitrogen calculators that are online from Dr. Franzen. We discussed at one of our marketing meetings that we need to be working to apply proper nitrogen amounts to maximize yield based on fertilizer costs and commodity pricing. This particular bulletin and nitrogen calculators address this. If you use the calculators, you will be asked to enter the
commodity price per bushel, as well as the approximate cost of N per pound. In addition, you will need residual N numbers and previous crop information. The calculator will populate a final total N number, which you can shoot for with your fertilizer blends and applications. Please note- $350/T urea is equivalent to $0.38 per pound of N. Try some calculations and see what works! With the possibility of an early spring, we are confident we are ready to go with fertilizer applications. Please help us ensure that we can operate at our highest efficiency level by discussing your plans with our agronomy sales department. With plans in our Agvance software system, we are only a phone call and a few clicks away from sending your application files to the plant. Calling in advance will help get you scheduled in a timely manner. We really appreciate our patrons who do plan ahead, as you probably donâ€™t realize what a difference it makes! As we move forward, plan ahead and be safe. It appears we are all hoping something changes for a better outlook for this season, but it just doesnâ€™t seem to want to happen, so letâ€™s do this thing! #plant16
S P RI NG 2016
Monsanto and Croplan, have lowered the price of the Extend soybeans.
Mike Weed - Sales Agronomist
SEED NEWS UPDATE Iâ€™m sure you all know by now that China has approved the RR2 EXTEND soybeans. These soybeans have the Dicamba trait and will be a great addition to helping clean up some of these fields that we have struggled with in prior years. The problem now is that the EPA has to approve the chemical that we would then use on them. Because the seed approval by China took so long, we may not have enough time for EPA approval on the chemistry side and product positioning in time for use this spring. It must be EPA approved chemistry used on these soybeans, NO other Dicamba chemistry can be sprayed. With that being said, the companies we are aligned with, Monsanto and Croplan, have lowered the price of the Extend soybeans hoping to get these genetics on the farm, even if you are not able to use the chemistry yet. They are now priced the same as RR2 soybeans,
BO T TO M LI NE
and in some cases, less than RR2 soybeans. This is a great opportunity to get new top-of-the-line genetics on your farm without paying a premium price, with the added possibility that the chemical will get approved also. A big share of the soybeans for 2017 will be Extend soybeans. Because of this, if you have ground you were going to plant a RR2 soybean on, you may want to look at switching some acres to Extend soybeans just to get a good look at them on your farm. We have a very good supply of these yet to work with, along with RR2 and Liberty soybeans. It looks like there could be a few more corn acres planted compared to last year. A number of the hybrids that did well in last yearâ€™s plots sold out very quickly. There are still very good hybrids left to work with and every year differs. There has been some interest in straight RR corn to help lower the cost per acre. We have some of these available to work with also. Let us know if you are interested in any of these seed options.
SOYBEAN PROTECTION Ben Christopherson Sales Agronomist
The 2016 planting season is fast approaching. One hot topic this year is herbicide resistant weeds in soybeans. Weeds such as ragweed, lambsquarter, and waterhemp are much tougher to control in soybeans without using a strong pre-emerge herbicide program. Use of a pre-emerge herbicide is a key strategy in the prevention and management of resistant weed populations. Using a pre can result in many benefits including: increased yield due to reductions in earlyseason weed competition, introduction of another herbicide site of action, better control of weeds that
This is a good option if you are in a sugar beet rotation
This is a three way mix of Dual Magnum, Sencor, and Pursuit
emerge over an extended period of time, decreased weed size at the time of post application, and more timely post herbicide application. Pairing the right pre-emerge program with one of the post programs used in Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans, Liberty Link soybeans, or Roundup Xtend soybeans is key for maximizing yields. The one note I would make on Roundup Xtend soybeans is that the soybeans have been approved for export but the Xtend chemistry has not been approved yet by the EPA. Hopefully by spray season the chemistry will be approved. Having a plan now to have a pre-emerge herbicide applied is great; but I realize when spring comessometimes in the heat of the battle to get the crop in the ground, the pre- application gets pushed aside. I would strongly encourage on the fields that may have had some resistant issues last year that you make time to put down the pre with some residual. Listed above are two of the many options for pre-emerge chemicals. If you have any questions on what would work for you, give any of the agronomy staff a call and we would be glad to help you. Thanks for your business and we look forward to working with you.
S P RI NG 2016
Braeden Nelson - Credit Manager
CREDIT REPORT Today is February 26th and it is 50 degrees outside in North Dakota as I write this article. I just can’t get over how unpredictable our weather patterns have been over the winter. One can only hope that at these current commodity prices we can get some sort of weather scare to get some upward movement in these markets. The weather can surely change in a hurry as we have found out before, but the weather seems to be signaling the end of winter and the focus is shifting towards spring rather quickly. Hopefully the banks were favorable to work with this winter as lines of credit were renewed for another year. I imagine a lot more questions were asked during that process than we have seen the last couple of years. If you are having trouble getting the necessary capital for your operation, stop by the office and see if one of the financing options I outline below can help you out in 2016. I would much rather see you utilize one of these simple financing programs at a much lower interest rate than carrying your agronomy bill for months on your Maple River Grain charge account at 18% interest. The reason I brought in these programs was to benefit the farmer with a simple application process, lower interest cost, and repayment flexibility that allows you to market your crop effectively. For example, a $25,000 agronomy bill that is not paid after harvest because a farmer wants to market his grain into the spring costs 5 cents per bushel per month on corn at $3.25 and 12 cents per bushel per month on soybeans at $8 when you carry that bill on your charge account at 18% interest. I am not saying you shouldn’t defer grain to take advantage of a rally in the markets, but what I am saying is there are cheaper options for cutting interest expense on your input bills to allow you to do that more efficiently. There were cases this year where we just have not seen the spring rally necessary to make up that kind of cost per bushel. I encourage you to look into the programs I am about to outline and come and talk with me
BO T TO M LI NE
I would like to wish you all a safe spring planting season. Thank you for your support of Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC.
about your financial situation and see if there is a way I can help. All financial information we talk about is confidential just as if you were talking to your banker. It’s not the sales agronomist job to understand your financial situation and frankly most of you would rather them not know what’s going on with your finances. Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC brought me in as an experienced Ag banker to take that aspect away from sales staff and I truly believe that is the best practice for everyone involved in the sales process.
New Financing Option for 2016 – Contact immediately as program ends soon! Hopefully you have all heard about the new 0% financing option on seed and chemical that Winfield introduced to us this spring. If you have not, you can refer to our website and click on the credit and financing tab to read more about this program. This program allows you to finance all of the seed brands that we offer at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC with the exception of Stine and all chemical that is a Winfield product or a vended product through Winfield at 0% until February, 2017. This is a UCC upon default program which means no UCC lien filings will be placed on you unless you were to default on the loan. Pro Partners Financial along with Winfield will be the underwriters for this program and the credit decision will be made by them- not Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC. The most streamlined application process with this program is for loans up to $250,000 which consists of a one page application along with an entity authorization form depending on the entity structure of your operation. Remember interest cost, though not as significant, is an input just like seed, chemical, and fertilizer, and fuel so take advantage of this opportunity to save considerably on it. Please see me ASAP if you are interested as this program ends soon.
AGRISPAN FINANCING OPTION Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC has a working agreement with ProPartners Financial to utilize their “Agrispan” program for crop input financing. I encourage anyone who will be carrying a balance on their charge account for longer than the end of the month to take a look at this option. This program allows a qualified borrower to request up to $250,000 in unsecured credit for the purchase of our products and services with a single one page application. For those borrowers who do not qualify for unsecured credit or would like a little better interest rate, a secured option is available for very little additional paperwork. This is a convenient financing option for our customers as it requires minimal information and allows for greater payback flexibility. All loans under this program carry a February 10th maturity date meaning any inputs purchased this spring could be carried until February, 2017 with this program. Interest rates are based off of the prime index and will be much more favorable than the 18% that you will be paying if you carry a balance on your charge account. The streamlined application process works pretty well for loans $250,000 and under. Larger loans would require more traditional underwriting and more financial information, but they are available. For more information on this program or if you are interested in getting signed up, give me a call or stop by my office and we can get the process going.
NEW DRYING POLICY Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC has made the decision to no longer bill out on account for drying charges in 2016.This is a credit management decision and is based on the difficulty for the cooperative to secure ourselves for payment on unpaid drying balances. During a wet fall, we can see a significant amount of liability on drying charges with little to no way to secure ourselves. Continuing to bill these charges out on account can create a large unsecured liability for the coop which leads to increased credit risk. The new policy is to offset drying costs as you sell your grain. You will see the drying taken off from your settlement statement when you sell your grain. If you would like to work out an arrangement for paying your drying bill early or in a specific tax year, please stop in the office and we can give you your drying balance so you can get that paid separately. I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause, but keep in mind this is being put in place to protect the cooperative from incurring losses as a result of increased credit risk. The benefit from this change is
WWW.ASGROW.COM Asgrow and the A Design®, Asgrow®, Genuity Design®, Genuity Icons, Genuity®, and Roundup Ready 2 Yield® are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. Always read and follow grain marketing and all other stewardship practices and pesticide label directions. ©2014 Monsanto Company. 39704 020315
that you are now able to track your drying expenses on your settlements and it should make things easier for your tax preparer. A letter will be sent out this fall with further explanation regarding this policy change.
ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE The last item I would like to talk about is our accounts receivable at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC. We are starting to see more difficulty in our collections as the Ag economy has taken a downturn. We have not incurred any credit losses, but the challenges with getting paid are starting to show up. We put a credit policy in place at the cooperative over a year ago and we intend to enforce that policy to protect your equity in the cooperative. Keep in mind if an account goes over 60 days past due the policy requires a crop lien to be filed and this will result in Maple River Grain’s crop lien being in first position ahead of the bank’s crop mortgage. I can’t stress this enough that if you are going to carry a balance on your charge account for that long that you should be looking at the Agrispan program for a longer term financing option. We have been very fortunate to not have a lot of collection issues so far at Maple River Grain and Agronomy, LLC but that’s not to say things won’t continue to get more difficult the longer commodity prices stay where they are at. S P RI NG 2016
At the time of this publication, I look out my window to a gray day with snow still covering the NDSU seed farm field, lying in wait of spring activity. That means there is still time to plan for #Plant16. In those plans, the agronomy sales staff at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC hopes you have a corn chemical program decided on - whether it will be a pre or a post, a onepass or two-pass system, a
extremely low use rate and early application timeframe (preplant is best, but up to V2), one time either before you plant or immediately after you plant or are you planning on making a second pass? If a onepass system is not workable for the weed situation on your farm, then a two-pass system might be what you have in mind. A two-pass system is one in which you have applied a pre or early
Kevin Lahlum - Sales Agronomist
conventional system, a Round Up or a Liberty system. There are many options available with many things to consider. In this article, I will highlight a few of the options available and things to be aware of with the system you may be looking at implementing on your farm. I will start out with the very basic explanations and work into the more complex chemicals themselves. The first type of chemical program we hope you have decided on is whether or not you want to choose a pre or post system. All this means is if you are applying pre-plant or pre-emerge, before planting or before the corn has emerged, or after the corn has emerged. Next, is a one-pass or twopass system. Are you planning on spraying a product such as Corvus from Bayer, with its
BO T TO M LI NE
post, but are also planning on making a second trip across the field with another chemical such as Round Up or Liberty, and including a product such as Laudis; which can be applied up to V9. Other than how many passes you are planning on making, you are probably also considering the type of corn to plant â€“ conventional, RR, or LL. Each of these has its own obvious concerns as far as chemical options. Clearly with conventional corn, any type of glyphosate or glufosinate herbicide will kill it. This does not mean though, that a product like Widematch could not be used on conventional corn. Just be aware that Round Up, or any other glyphosate product, or Liberty or any other Liberty product, or any grass killer, such as the quizalafops or the
clethodim products, will kill your conventional corn. RR corn simply means that glyphosate will not kill the corn. It also means that Round Up, or any other glyphosate product can be tank mixed and applied to corn that is above ground and actively growing. The same rules apply to LL corn. All this means is that corn with the LL trait will not die if Liberty is applied. This is all very basic and I donâ€™t mean to insult your intelligence; but be aware though, that Round Up could kill LL corn and Liberty could kill RR corn if both genes are not in the corn! Another thing to consider with your corn chemical program is your crop rotation system, and whether it includes wheat, sugar beets, sunflowers, or potatoes, in addition to soybeans. Many corn chemicals have a rotational restriction of 18 months for sunflowers and sugar beets. Many offer none to 4 months for small grains, and many restrict soybeans for 9-10 months. Many restrict potatoes for 30 months. As always, read the label and be aware of any rotational restrictions. As far as chemicals themselves to use; well, there are almost as many chemicals to use as there are fish in the Maple River. The big five chemical companiesBASF, Bayer, Dow, Monsanto, and Syngenta each have a corn chemical program, as well as the smaller FMC, Valent, and others. What you choose to use on your farm should really boil down to one. The toughest weeds on your farm and their size, two. The size and growth stage of the corn, three. The financing program you wish to take part in; if any, four. The price point
BASF you are willing to (or need to) pay, depending on the weed situation, five. Any rewards program you are involved with, whether it be Round Up Plus or Winfield Emerald, just to name a couple.
Verdict, Status, Outlook
As far as products that we recommend in your corn crop, as sales agronomists, our first concern is always killing the weeds to get rid of the competition. Remember that in corn, for every inch of weed growth over 2 inches, corn suffers a 4.7 bushel per acre yield loss. That is huge hit to a bottom line when we need bushels to pay bills. Corn is not very tolerant of competition. Cost is the next concern. Sometimes we may recommend a product that
Lumax EZ, Accuron, Callisto, Dual, Dual II Magnum, HalexGT
Corvus, Capreno, DiFlex
Surestart I and II, Resicore, Keystone
Tripleflex, Harness Extra
#plant16 seems more expensive if we know your ROI and the weed control job will be better than a less expensive product. Above, you will find a list of the four companies’ main corn offerings.
There are many others available, these are just the tip of the ice berg. As always, we are willing to walk any field this summer and discuss all of the options available to you. Thanks for your business and here’s hoping for a safe and productive #Plant16!
Eliminate weeds in half the time.
Tough weeds don’t stand a chance. With Class Act NG or Class Act Flex adjuvants in your tank mix, glyphosate herbicide controls tough weeds twice as fast, working in just three to five days, even during hot, dry weather. Both formulations are a liquid AMS premix, concentrated for easy handling, and include patented CornSorb technology for improved herbicide uptake. Ask your retailer to recommend either Class Act NG or Class Act Flex adjuvants, two field-proven WinField products. ®
CornSorb and WinField are trademarks, and Class Act and NG are registered trademarks of Winfield Solutions, LLC. © 2012 Winfield Solutions, LLC
S P RI NG 2016
Mike Flaten - Agronomy Manager
AGRONOMY MATTERS Spring is just around the corner and the Agronomy Team at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC is preparing for the upcoming season. We are continually maximizing our inventories and filling the fertilizer plant as full as we can get it. If you have booked your fertilizer, we do have it here in the plant for you. The equipment has been serviced and is ready to go with fertilizer applications. We have eight dry fertilizer spreaders that will be put to good use this spring. Along with operating our dry machines, we will have two liquid applicators and both our sprayers to apply pre-plant & pre-emerge chemicals when you are busy in the field getting seed planted. We have also added another trailer with a belt conveyor to our fleet of tender units to make a total of 15 semi-tenders along with 4 - 16-ton tender units to deliver the product in a timely manner. We have made many improvements in our application equipment and support fleet to be able to service our customersâ€™ needs today. We continue to aim for higher technology functionality and advances as we look towards the future. We hope you have a safe and productive planting season.
BO T TO M LI NE
Our ag loan officers have connected with producers on farms, at kitchen tables and across desks for 110 years. Now, we’re extending those connections with advanced tools like our mobile app and online banking. From the tractor cab, tailgate or back porch, you can bank whenever and wherever it’s best for you.
Because we value what you value.
Let’s make managing your farm ﬁnances easier. S P RI NG 2016
1630 1st Avenue South Casselton, ND 58012
Matador-S is the only Pre-Emerge annual grass and broadleaf herbicide which offers 3 Modes of Action that provides a sound strategy for weed control and resistance management for soybeans. Matador-S is an all in one liquid formulation for easy use and controls tough weeds like waterhemp, lambsquarters, and common ragweed. Application Rate for ND: 2 pints/acre Contact your Maple River Grain & Agronomy agronomist today to learn more about Matador-S.
The Bottom Line newsletter is published quarterly by Maple River Grain and Agronomy in Casselton, North Dakota. Designed by graphic designer...
Published on Mar 15, 2016
The Bottom Line newsletter is published quarterly by Maple River Grain and Agronomy in Casselton, North Dakota. Designed by graphic designer...