Consider Summer Grid Sampling

Brock Zenzen, CHS YieldPoint® Specialist, samples soil from one of our field locations

Why pack extra activity into your busy fall schedule when you don’t have to? Consider summer soil sampling! 

  • Knowing your soil sampling results in the summer versus fall allows you additional time to make informed plans for your 2021 crop.  
  • Get ahead of soil deficiencies! Cross-reference summer soil results and fall yield to improve fertility plans.  
  • We all know how unpredictable Mother Nature can make fall harvest. Create additional control with summer soil sampling to streamline your fall fieldwork. No more waiting for sampling to be completed before fall tillage!   

Contact your local CHS Agronomy Sales Representative or a member of our CHS YieldPoint® team for additional information and to book your sampling today.  

Farming and COVID-19: Put a plan in place

Republished with permission of South Dakota Corn.

Farmers had a lot on their minds heading into spring. Coming off of a flood-ravaged 2019 growing season, low grain prices and the prospect of fields being dry enough to plant were shaky.

Then they received another major kick in the teeth with the outbreak of the coronavirus, which has further battered the agricultural economy.

The pandemic raises numerous concerns as planting season nears. What steps can a farmer take to reduce the risk of COVID-19? And what happens if a farmer, family member or employee becomes ill with the virus? Do you have a contingency plan?

Farmers may feel the odds are in their favor to stay healthy because of the remote nature of their business, but being wrong can create some serious complications. Most of these issues can be avoided with a contingency plan for the farm.

Because there are so many things to think about, South Dakota Corn has worked with the National Corn Growers Association to compile a list of sound practices, safety procedures and planning recommendations that may help get through this challenging time. Here are some of those ideas.

On-farm planning

  • Schedule a brainstorming meeting with all family members and employees involved in the operation to discuss possible scenarios, solutions to potential disruptions during planting and subsequent fieldwork.
  • Develop a written continency plan. Are there neighbors who might be able to share resources and/or labor in an emergency? Who would manage for a few weeks if you or another key person is unable to leave your house or is hospitalized?
  • Make a list of immediate changes that can be implemented to lower risk on your farm.
  • Consider developing a Continuity of Business (COB) plan to keep operations running smoothly in case of any disruption. Many state departments of agriculture recommend that farms write COB plans.

Receiving deliveries

  • Identify and coordinate a drop-off location for deliveries of supplies to the farm. If possible, set this up away from on-farm high traffic areas and housing.
  • Create specific instructions for drop-off deliveries.
  • Create signs so drop-off points can be easily identified.
  • Practice distancing with delivery drivers. Maintain a distance of at least six feet and don’t shake hands.
  • Avoiding personal interaction is best.
  • Log all deliveries and on-farm entries. Utilize a visitors log for everyone entering the farm.

On-farm safety procedures

  • Minimize the exposure of outsiders. Use telephone calls, emails or texts for communications with employees or contractors who don’t live on the farm. Observe social distancing if someone visits the farm.
  • Increase sanitation of workspaces and make it part of your daily/weekly routine. Simple things like disinfecting work surfaces, countertops, computer keyboards, doorknobs, hand railings, tractor controls and monitors can make a difference.
  • Make cleaning supplies readily available, including cleaning solutions, buckets, mops and brushes to clean the shop and break areas. Place disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer on equipment, in truck cabs and in high-traffic areas.
  • Stay in the house if you’re sick. If family members are sick, they should isolate themselves as much as possible. If you have off-farm employees or seasonal help, alert them that all sick employees must stay home.
  • Inform employees where they can find sanitizing materials in the shop, in the truck and in the tractor.
  • Regularly sanitize door handles, floor mats, steering wheels and other commonly contacted surfaces.

Read the full article at https://www.sdcorn.org/2020/04/farming-and-covid-19-put-plan-in-place/

Micronutrients 101: Going Back to Basics

This article first appeared in the LIFT newsletter, a publication of CHS Agronomy. Read the entire article.

As growers finalize planting preparations and plan in-season fertilizer and sidedress applications, they may be looking for solutions for micronutrients deficiencies identified by soil or tissue sampling on their most productive acres. What are the most essential micronutrients and what products can help with yield and profitability?

The essential micronutrients include Zinc (Zn), Iron (Fe), Boron (B), Copper (Cu), Molybdenum (Mo) and Manganese (Mn).

  • They are considered micros because they are needed in smaller amounts compared to macronutrients by the plant.
  • Many micronutrients hold the key to how well the other nutrients are used; attribute to how well the plant develops and effects the total yield it will produce come harvest.
  • They also help feed the microorganisms in the soil to perform important steps in various nutrient cycles of the growing process.
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CHS reports $125.4 million in second quarter net income

Sunset over a farm

April 8, 2020

Dear Owners:

We are pleased to share our second quarter results for fiscal year 2020. We reported net income of $125.4 million for the second quarter of fiscal year 2020, which ended Feb. 29, 2020. This compares to net income of $248.8 million in the second quarter of fiscal year 2019.

The company reported revenues of $6.6 billion for the second quarter of fiscal year 2020 compared to revenues of $6.5 billion for the second quarter of fiscal year 2019. In the first six months of fiscal year 2020, CHS reported net income of $303.3 million compared to net income of $596.3 million in the first six months of fiscal year 2019.

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Update on COVID-19 from Jay Debertin

Dear valued customers and owners:

As our essential businesses work to meet spring season demands amid the COVID-19 pandemic, we continue to focus on the health and safety of every person and community connected to CHS and the cooperative system.

We want you to know that CHS remains fully operational and committed to providing the essential products and services you need. Our supply chain is prepared and moving into action as spring fieldwork begins. Grain is moving and the spring shipping season has begun. We are grateful for those positive signs.

Thank you for your business. Please let us know how we can help you navigate through the days and weeks ahead.

Sincerely,

Jay D. Debertin
President and CEO

COVID-19 Updates – March 17

March 17, 2020:

A message about COVID-19

With the impact of the global pandemic caused by COVID-19 evolving rapidly, we want to reassure you that CHS is taking steps to protect the health and safety of our employees, our owners and customers, and the communities we serve.

CHS Inc. is developing plans with the goal of continuing to provide the highest possible level of service to our customers and owners. Specific measures include:

  • Close coordination and collaboration to ensure safety and wellbeing of employees, customers and communities
  • Cancelation of annual meetings and other meetings of large groups and limiting visits to CHS facilities
  • Additional use of voice, video and other technology to serve you, our customers and coordinate farm visits
  • Activating plans to flex employees between locations or business units to better serve you
  • New process and rigor for interactions with vendors, suppliers, contractors or other third parties to promote health and safety
  • Fully utilizing our powerful and flexible supply chain and asset base should it become necessary to deliver to or from alternate locations

Locally, we’re taking additional measures to help keep our staff safe while continuing to serve our customers.

  • We are limiting all foot traffic into offices, including from our customers. We encourage you to call, text, or email our staff for assistance. Any visitors to our office will be required to complete a questionnaire before entering our facilities.
  • We’re asking all staff and visitors to adhere to the 6 foot distance recommended by the CDC to reduce virus spread.
  • For the health of the employees on-site, the Lowry elevator has been temporarily closed.
  • Additional local updates will be shared on this page and will also be sent out via email.  To be added to our email alerts, go here and subscribe for any of the news lists that are of value to you – all are being included in COVID-19 alert emails at this time.

As the busy spring season unfolds, we will continue to adjust as circumstances change. We don’t take this challenge lightly, but we’re committed to working through it with effective planning, communication and execution. With our talented and committed team, best-in-class assets and our values of safety and cooperative spirit, we are confident CHS will continue to deliver products and services for customers and value for owners.

COVID-19 Updates – March 13

March 13, 2020:

Out of an abundance of caution due to growing international concerns about coronavirus (COVID-19), CHS has suspended meetings and events until further notice. This decision impacts site tours, annual meetings and other events.

This includes the cancellation of the following events:

  • Harvest for Hunger meat raffle on Friday, March 13 at 12 Mile Tavern in Swanville
  • Harvest for Hunger meat raffle on Saturday, March 14 at Starbuck VFW
  • Park Rapids customer appreciation event on Tuesday, March 17 at the new Park Rapids office
  • Harvest for Hunger meat raffle on Saturday, March 21 at Starbuck VFW
  • Any other CHS Prairie Lakes hosted event that may not be listed here

Thank you for your understanding.

Western Minnesota Farmers Already Looking to 2020 Growing Season

Seed selection is a critical part of planning

INVER GROVE HEIGHTS, Minn. (Jan. 29, 2020) — It’s hard to believe, but farmers in western Minnesota are thinking about next spring, even though last year’s harvest is not far in the past.

There are a lot of decisions to be made and planning to be done and equipment to be repaired before we ever see a tractor on the road in the spring, or before a seed ever hits the ground. What new equipment will I need to purchase, what nutrients does my soil need, what is my fertilizer strategy, what insects and weeds will I need to worry about, how will I market my crops, should I diversify — these are all going through farmers’ minds and notes between now and then.

But one of the most important decisions a farmer will make is what seed to plant. There are different companies, different brands, different maturity ratings (how long it takes from the time the seed is planted to when it’s ready to harvest), and a long list of features and benefits for each one.

Andy Clauson, a CHS Key Agronomy Specialist who is also an authority on Allegiant® seed products, offers a few tips for making seed selections.

“It’s crucial to consider data beyond your last harvest before making seed selections for next year,” Clauson said.

“During last year’s harvest, pretty much anything that could go wrong, went wrong,” he continued. “Planting was delayed. We had a wet spring. We got in as much corn as we could in a very short window before it could get wet again. It was a struggle from the beginning.”

Due to these harsh weather conditions, there has been a trend of farmers wanting to switch to early-maturity corn, in hopes of having drier corn and earlier harvesting to prevent past struggles.

“By switching to early-maturity hybrids and varieties, you potentially give up yield,” added Clauson. “Farmers need to stick with what has historically been working best in their territories. If you normally plant 95-day maturity-rating corn, plant 95-day corn.  You don’t need to go down to 87-day corn.”

Clauson explained how temperature plays a strong role in corn development, and the importance of looking at multiyear data to reduce risk.

“By looking at historical heat units within your area, we can find a hybrid that will make it to black layer [an indicator of physiological maturity] , to help ensure the best yields to be able to market that product at the end of the season,” said Clauson.

Most farmers are ready to put the difficulties of this year’s growing season behind them, and they have a lot to think about when planning for next year. Local co-ops, ag retailers and agronomists like Andy Clauson are great resources to help do that.

© 2020 CHS Inc. Allegiant® is a registered trademark of CHS Inc.

© 2020 CHS Inc.

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