Bees and Wasps: Quick Tips and Reminders

It’s that time of year again when everybody’s favorite pollinators start showing up. I’m talking about the stinger-bearing insects that we start seeing in the summer: bees and wasps. Since these insects are most abundant in the warmer months, its important to be on the look out for nests and hives that may be developing in your yard. Bees and wasps tend to make theirs homes in places like trees, roof eaves, and even on equipment such as ladder or under tank valve covers.

You can remove the hives by yourself, but it is recommended that you have a professional handle these pests. If you have the proper protection, such as a hat, gloves, or ideally a bee suit if you have one, you can spray insecticide on the hive to get rid of the pests before you take it down. This isn’t a one and done application though as it may take several applications before the bees are all gone.

If you do have bees or wasps in your yard, here are some quick tips that can help you avoid getting stung:

1. Wear light-colored, smooth-finished clothing.

2. Avoid perfumed soaps, shampoos, and deodorants.

3. Wear clean clothing and bathe daily. (Sweat may anger bees.)

4. Wear clothing to cover as much of the body as possible.

5. Avoid flowering plants when possible.

6. Keep work areas clean. Social wasps thrive in places where humans discard food.

7. Remain calm and still if a single stinging insect is flying around. (Swatting at an insect may cause it to sting.)

8. If you are attacked by several stinging insects at once, run to get away from them. (Bees release a chemical when they sting, which may attract other bees.)

a. Go indoors.

b. A shaded area is better than an open area to get away from the insects.

9. If a bee comes inside your vehicle, stop the car slowly, and open all the windows.

10. Workers with a history of severe allergic reactions to insect bites or stings should consider carrying an epinephrine auto injector (EpiPen) and should wear a medical identification bracelet or necklace stating their allergy.

Summer is quickly coming to an end, but by following these tips you can make the best of the remaining summer days.

ATV Reminders and Safety

  1. Make sure your ATV ramps are designed for ATV use, properly rated for the load and are long enough to prevent an overly steep approach to the truck or trailer bed.
  2. When rolling your ATV up or down ramps, secure them to the truck with a pair of tie-downs. Without them, jerky acceleration or braking can easily cause the ramps to slip and fall off the tailgate.
  3. Secure the ATV before driving with appropriate straps or tiedowns. Every time you stop and get out of your vehicle, check to make sure your straps are tight and see if the load has shifted. keep in mind, if you’re hauling in the rain, nylon straps stretch when they get wet, so extra attention is needed if things are damp.
  4. An easy way to save the front of your bed from damage, or even worse, your rear window from being broken by your quad’s bumper, use an old tire to wedge it between the ATV before tying it forward. A simple wood box works too!
  5. Using an extra tie-down or a bungee cord over a loose seat or a set of fender could save you from a ruined day.

CHS reports $273.6 million in fiscal 2021 third-quarter net income

Closeup of green soybean rows

Strongest third-quarter net earnings since 2014; $50 million of additional owner equity redemptions authorized in 2021

CHS Inc. released results for its fiscal third quarter ended May 31, 2021. The company reported net income of $273.6 million compared to $97.6 million in the third quarter of fiscal year 2020, an increase of 180.2%. Significant year-over-year earnings growth in all business segments — Energy, Ag and Nitrogen Production — and Corporate and Other businesses each contributed to the increase.

Reflecting strong company performance, the CHS Board of Directors has approved $50 million in additional equity redemptions to member cooperatives and individual owners since the December 2020 CHS Annual Meeting. The increase is incremental to $33 million in approved equity redemptions announced at the 2020 annual meeting, for a total of $83 million in planned owner equity redemptions in fiscal 2021. A distribution of $30 million in cash patronage was also made to owners in early calendar 2021, based on business transacted with CHS in fiscal 2020.

“Robust performance across CHS resulted in a very strong third quarter,” said Jay Debertin, president and CEO of CHS Inc. “Strong global demand in agricultural markets and the hard work we have been doing to gain efficiencies across our supply chain led to higher volumes in nearly every business area, significantly improving our Ag segment earnings compared to the prior year’s third quarter.

“We also are seeing increasing momentum in pandemic recovery as restrictions ease and vaccination efforts progress, which has had a favorable impact on our Energy segment results and overall performance.”

Fiscal 2021 third-quarter highlights

  • Revenues of $10.9 billion grew 50.9% from $7.2 billion in the third quarter of fiscal 2020.
  • Earnings were up by more than 40% across all business segments (and Corporate and Other businesses) compared to both the second quarter of fiscal 2021 and the third quarter of the previous fiscal year.

Energy segment results

  • Improved refined fuels margins resulted in fiscal 2021 third quarter margin gains, as did the absence of a $42.0 million noncash charge to reduce refined fuels inventories to their market value that impacted the prior year’s third quarter, but did not reoccur in the third quarter of fiscal 2021.
  • Improved margins in the company’s refined fuels business were partially offset by significantly higher prices of renewable energy credits that had a negative impact on margins of approximately $82.0 million, less favorable pricing on heavy Canadian crude oil and lower propane margins due to the reversal of hedging gains recognized during the prior year.
  • Overall, revenues increased by 24.2% and earnings increased by $59.6 million over the fiscal 2021 second quarter, reflecting volume and margin recovery from the effects of the pandemic.

Ag segment results

  • Strong global demand drove commodity prices higher, and improved trade relations between the United States and foreign trade partners led to continued higher volumes for grain and oilseed, which significantly improved Ag segment earnings compared to the prior year’s third quarter.
  • Higher overall margins were partially offset by mark-to-market losses for certain processing and food ingredients products, which the company expects to reverse over time.
  • Lower volumes of feed and farm supplies were partially offset by increased volumes for agronomy products, stemming from stronger demand due to favorable weather conditions, compared with the previous year’s third quarter.

Other focus areas

  • Nitrogen Production segment earnings increased in the quarter due to higher income attributed to increased sale prices of urea and urea ammonium nitrate.
  • Favorable market conditions for edible oils and a recovery in sales volumes compared to earlier in the pandemic drove significantly increased income through the company’s investment in Ventura Foods, LLC.
  • Focused cost-reduction initiatives, launched in fiscal 2021, continued to gain traction in reducing year-to-date marketing, general and administrative expenses.
  • The company began to bring employees back to its global offices in full or hybrid capacities as pandemic restrictions lifted. The costs of these activities are not expected to be material.

For the nine months ended May 31, 2021, CHS reported net income of $305.0 million versus $401.0 million for the same period in fiscal 2020.

“We are encouraged by overall improvements in the global economy and the positive traction we’re gaining at CHS with initiatives focused on working more efficiently and effectively throughout the enterprise,” said Debertin. “We are optimistic conditions will continue to improve over the next 12 months. The resilience of our employees and their commitment to our owners and customers has been inspiring and we look forward to the future and continued shared success.”

FY2021 Quarter 3 CHS Inc. earnings statement by segment
*Earnings is defined as income (loss) before income taxes

This document and other CHS Inc. publicly available documents contain, and CHS officers and representatives may from time to time make, “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “goal,” “seek,” “believe,” “project,” “estimate,” “expect,” “strategy,” “future,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “will” and similar references to future periods. Forward-looking statements are neither historical facts nor assurances of future performance. Instead, they are based only on CHS current beliefs, expectations and assumptions regarding the future of its businesses, financial condition and results of operations, future plans and strategies, projections, anticipated events and trends, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict and many of which are outside of CHS control. CHS actual results and financial condition may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Therefore, you should not place undue reliance on any of these forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause CHS actual results and financial condition to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements are discussed or identified in CHS filings made with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including in the “Risk Factors” discussion in Item 1A of CHS Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2020, and Item 1A of Part II of CHS Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended May 31, 2021. These factors may include: changes in commodity prices; the impact of government policies, mandates, regulations and trade agreements; global and regional political, economic, legal and other risks of doing business globally; the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak or other similar outbreaks; the impact of market acceptance of alternatives to refined petroleum products; consolidation among our suppliers and customers; nonperformance by contractual counterparties; changes in federal income tax laws or our tax status; the impact of compliance or noncompliance with applicable laws and regulations; the impact of any governmental investigations; the impact of environmental liabilities; actual or perceived quality, safety or health risks associated with our products; the impact of seasonality; the effectiveness of our risk management strategies; business interruptions and casualty losses; the impact of workforce factors; our funding needs and financing sources; changes in the method of determining, or the replacement of, LIBOR; technological improvements that decrease the demand for our agronomy and energy products; our ability to complete, integrate and benefit from acquisitions, strategic alliances, joint ventures, divestitures and other nonordinary course-of-business events; security breaches or other disruptions to our information technology systems or assets; the impact of our environmental, social and governance practices; the impairment of long-lived assets; and other factors affecting our businesses generally. Any forward-looking statements made by CHS in this document are based only on information currently available to CHS and speak only as of the date on which the statement is made. CHS undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise except as required by applicable law.

It’s that time of year again to stock up on Cenex® Grease that’ll make you eligible for to earn VISA® Gift Cards!

Summer is right around the corner, and the 2021 Summer Grease for Gift Cards promotion will soon kickoff to reward customers for buying Cenex® grease. From June 15 through August 14, 2021, customers can earn a $15 VISA® gift card for every 4-10 pack or 35# pail, OR a $50 VISA gift card for every 120# keg of qualifying products purchased.

Qualifying products include:
• Corn Head Grease
• HD Moly Xtreme
• Poly-Xtreme®
• Maxtron® EP
• Blue Gard® 500+™
• Molyplex 500+
• Maxtron® FS
• Red Protect XT®
• ML 365®
• Fluid Gear Grease
Once the program begins:
1. Customers will be provided a Summer Grease for Gift Cards Redemption Form at time of Cenex grease purchase.
2. Customers, or dealer on behalf of the customer, must complete the redemption form, attach the qualifying sales receipt(s) or invoices, and mail it to CHS post-marked no later than September 16, 2021.

Contact your local certified energy specialist, Hank Weniger, with any questions via email at harold.weniger@chsinc.com or phone at 320-429-5064.

Keep your rural road safe

June is National Safety Month. CHS and Nationwide are proud to share a partnership focused on safety. The following information is provided by Nationwide, the #1 farm and ranch writer in the U.S.*

Nationwide logo

Safely navigating large agricultural equipment over rural roads to and from the fields is a challenge for even the best drivers. Nationwide reminds farmers to consider the following rules on the safe operation of equipment to help reduce the risk of motor vehicle collisions.

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2021 Scholarship Recipients

The 2020-2021 school year will always be one that students will remember as they had to face many challenges because of the COVID-19 pandemic. CHS Prairie Lakes takes pride in supporting students achieve their goals and we are pleased to announce that we were able to award two scholarships to high school seniors this year.

The CHS Prairie Lakes scholarship committee chose two applicants who projected profound scholastic achievement, a keen work ethic, and a sage vision for the future of agriculture. Applicants had to submit various short answer questions about their leadership experiences and their school involvement. They were also required to write a short essay about why agriculture is important to them, our community, and the world.

This year’s recipients of the CHS Prairie Lakes scholarship are Jayden Hensley and Kristy Kollman. Jayden plans to attend Minnesota State University Moorhead to pursue a degree in Business Administration and Kristy will be studying Animal Science at North Dakota State University. Congratulations to these two wonderful young women! We wish you the best of luck in all your future endeavors.

Meet Our 2021 Summer Interns

Ben is currently attending the University of Minnesota – Crookston majoring in Agricultural Business and Agronomy with a minor in Finance. He was born and raised on a corn and soybean farm south of Staples, MN and that is where he found his love and enjoyment for agriculture. After his graduation, Ben plans to begin working at a rural cooperative in the Midwest, beginning as an agronomist and hopes to eventually transition into the operations and business sectors of the cooperative. Ben hopes to one day begin his own private agronomy and ag business operation. Alongside this, he had found an interest in fabrication so starting a hobby with that is something of interest to him as well.

Ben is excited for the opportunities this internship will offer him and for the knowledge that will assist with his career objectives.

Karmen Sperr grew up in Donnelly, MN on her family’s farm where they grow corn, soybeans, and wheat and they also raise pigs. Karmen graduated from Morris Area in High School in 2020 where she was actively involved in FFA. She was also very involved in the Stevens County 4-H program for 13 years. FFA and 4-H are really what drove her passion for agriculture and her decision to major in Agricultural Communications and Agricultural Leadership with a minor in Animal Science at South Dakota State University. In college, Karmen is involved in the Sigma Alpha Sorority, Collegiate Farm Bureau, Swine Club, Prexy Council, Little International, Student’s Association Senate, and the CAFES Ambassador Program. Karmen enjoys many aspects of the ag industry and hopes to one day be an advocate for the industry by working for a commodity group in the Midwest.

Karmen is very excited for her internship this summer and she is excited to see what she can learn in her experiences to strengthen her knowledge about the ag industry.

Consolidation Announcement

As CHS continues to strategically align our cooperative, we are advancing an integrated, enterprise product line and supply chain to bring one consistent approach to our customers and farmer-owners. To accomplish this, the producer boards and management teams of CHS Prairie Lakes and CHS based in Herman, Minnesota have made the decision to consolidate the two business units within CHS.

The two CHS business units have complimentary locations and other operational efficiencies and jointly leveraging our business, assets, products and services will create value for our owners while improving services and offerings to better serve customers. The energy teams began working together this year and have discovered significant opportunities for growth and improved customer service through this partnership. We look forward to scaling that success to other core areas.

Tentative plan is to finalize consolidation by fiscal year end on Aug. 31, 2021. Carl Younce, interim general manager of CHS Prairie Lakes, will continue through the end of May. At that time, Jerry Kramer, current general manager of CHS in Herman, will take over management responsibilities for both business units and serve as the general manager of the combined business. Our goal is to determine the rest of the senior leadership team for the new consolidated business unit by the end of fiscal year 2021.

This consolidation allows us to deliver on Country Operations strategy by streamlining our services and offerings while capitalizing on economies of scale and more efficient use of assets and resources across the expanded geographical territory.

As our customers and owners, you should see little change in how you interact with CHS on a day-to-day business as we will be offering all the same products and services you expect and need from us.

Our focus continues to be on delivering solutions to you that make it easy, helpful and rewarding to do business with CHS.

Thank you for your support,
Brian Jergenson, Chair, CHS Prairie Lakes & Steven Deal, Chair, CHS based in Herman, Minnesota

CHS Reports Fiscal 2021 Second-Quarter Results

CHS Inc., the nation’s leading agribusiness cooperative, today released results for its fiscal second quarter ended Feb. 28, 2021. The company reported a net loss of $38.2 million versus net income of $125.4 million in the same quarter in fiscal 2020. Significant year-over-year earnings increases in Ag and Nitrogen Production segments and Corporate and Other businesses were offset primarily by ongoing COVID-19 pandemic-related impacts in Energy.

“Improved trade relations between the United States and foreign trade partners combined with our operating efficiency initiatives led to record grain and oilseed volume increases and continued price gains, significantly improving our Ag segment earnings over the prior year,” said Jay Debertin, president and CEO of CHS Inc. “Additionally, favorable growing conditions and overall strength in agriculture, helped drive demand for crop inputs, including crop nutrients and crop protection products and services.

“Our Energy segment, while showing improvement over the previous quarter, continues to experience unfavorable refined fuels market conditions related to the COVID-19 pandemic and exceptionally higher costs for renewable energy credits. These factors resulted in volume and margin declines that significantly reduced earnings compared to the prior year.”

Fiscal 2021 second-quarter results reflect: 

  • Revenues of $8.3 billion versus $6.6 billion in fiscal 2020 second quarter, a 26.1% increase. 
  • Energy segment impacts that include:  
    • Continued low refining margins stemming from COVID-19-impacts on global energy demand.
    • Exceptionally high costs of renewable energy credits, which decreased margins.
    • Decreased propane margins and volumes due to warm winter weather conditions across the CHS trade territory during most of the fiscal 2021 second quarter.
    • Modest improvements over fiscal 2021 first quarter as volumes and margins began to rebound. 
  • Ag segment impacts that include:  
    • Favorable weather conditions and improved relations between the U.S. and foreign trade partners, including China, that increased volumes of grain and oilseed commodities as well as feed and farm supplies.
    • Higher margins for certain agricultural products, including processing and food ingredients, which improved because of soybean crush strength.
  • Enterprisewide initiatives that include:  
    • Focused cost-reduction initiatives launched in fiscal 2021 that helped reduce marketing, general and administrative costs.
    • COVID-19-related working arrangements and increased hygiene and infection-control processes to mitigate risk and support business continuity – all CHS operations were deemed to be essential infrastructure industries by federal and state governments.

For the six-month period ending Feb. 28, 2021, CHS reported net income of $31.4 million versus $303.3 million for the same period in fiscal 2020. Revenues for the first six months of fiscal 2021 rose to $17.0 billion, a $2.8 billion, or 19.8%, increase from $14.2 billion in the same period the previous year.

“I am encouraged by the resilience of our employees and their commitment to owners in what continues to be a challenging operating environment,” said Debertin. “We are cautiously optimistic about the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines and other progress being made in response to the pandemic in the U.S. and around the world and the potential impact on our domestic and global businesses.

“As we look ahead to the second half of fiscal 2021, we remain committed to protecting the financial health of CHS, adding efficiency throughout our enterprise to benefit owners and customers, and caring for those who depend on us as we continue creating connections to empower agriculture.”

CHS income chart

This document and other CHS Inc. publicly available documents contain, and CHS officers and representatives may from time to time make, “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Report Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as “anticipate,” “intend,” “plan,” “goal,” “seek,” “believe,” “project,” “estimate,” “expect,” “strategy,” “future,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “will” and similar references to future periods. Forward-looking statements are neither historical facts nor assurances of future performance. Instead, they are based only on CHS current beliefs, expectations and assumptions regarding the future of its businesses, future plans and strategies, projections, anticipated events and trends, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict and many of which are outside of CHS control. CHS actual results and financial condition may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Therefore, you should not place undue reliance on any of these forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause CHS actual results and financial condition to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements are discussed or identified in CHS filings made with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including in the “Risk Factors” discussion in Item 1A of CHS Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended August 31, 2020. Any forward-looking statements made by CHS in this document are based only on information currently available to CHS and speak only as of the date on which the statement is made. CHS undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise except as required by applicable law.

© 2021 CHS Inc.