Indiana and Ohio: The Differences in Production Ag

National Agriculture Day was Tuesday, March 24 and we want to honor all that Indiana and Ohio agriculture produces.

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This week (and always) we’re celebrating agriculture and in doing so, we’ve created an educational video about Ohio and Indiana that students, parents, and teachers can utilize from home.

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We invite you to watch this clip of Nikki and Julie from our Risk Management department while they have a little friendly competition between the two states.

 

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Essential Work

We’re swimming in uncharted waters, and that statement has absolutely nothing to do with the water standing in the basement of many farmhouses in the area due to the incessant rain.

COVID-19The COVID-19 pandemic has shut down schools, national tournaments, universities,
restaurants, businesses, airlines, libraries and so much more. The financial loss that will
affect nearly every American due to this outbreak could linger for years. And to think, two weeks ago, it seemed to be something only taking place on the other side of the world.

On Tuesday of this week, the first case of COVID-19 was diagnosed at the local hospital and immediately level two travel watch was enforced. Level two means that conditions are threatening to the safety of the public. During a “watch” local travel advisory, only essential travel, such as to and from work or in emergency situations, is recommended, and emergency action plans should be implemented by businesses, schools, government agencies, and other organizations.

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Our leadership team had a long and impassioned conversation regarding our business operations during this extremely fluid time.

The safety of our employees.

How symptoms look or feel.

Long-term planning.

Addressing customer needs during a time of social distancing, a phrase that we’d never heard of seven days ago.

How we take care of business, by taking care of people.

We realized with great certainty: Our work is essential.

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When a fuel driver shows up in the morning and loads his truck, he’ll spend the day delivering to tanks that will fill fire trucks, law enforcement vehicles, and semis that will deliver fresh produce or boxed pasta to Kroger.

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Our work is essential.

When a propane driver comes to work and maps his route for the day, he delivers propane to nursing homes, rural churches, houses on 700 W. that are full of e-learning children and tired parents, and he also fills the tank at the hospital so the generator is operational. Then he goes north and supplies propane to the temperature-controlled hog finishing barns with 1,000 head inside.

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Our work is essential.

When a truck driver loads his semi full of corn and departs the ag center, he is delivering corn to pet food factories so beloved dogs can have food available in a few months. He also delivers feed to turkey farmers who will supply Thanksgiving birds, pork producers who are currently feeding out hogs that will be become the next great plate of bacon and also beef producers who will put hamburgers on the grill over Labor Day weekend.

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Our work is essential.

When a YieldPro Specialist drives down the lane of a 100-year-old farmstead and sits at the kitchen table with a grower, he is working with her to map out plans for fertilizer, field work, seed, seed treatment, starter fertilizer, pre-emergence, dormant spray and beyond so that her farm family can supply the food chain and feed the world.

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Our work is essential.

When our IT team shows up to Richmond and enters a room full of wires, technology and computers, they serve as internal problem solvers that ensure farmer-members can pay their bills online during a quarantine, problem solvers that keep phone lines operational to take calls at one of our 40 locations or problem solvers that fix a dispatch glitch in an applicator machine trying to get fungicide on several fields.

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Our work is essential.

When our support staff team shows up to the ag center or office and situates themselves in front of the computer, they’re about to take on a day of processing payments so a family can get propane again in April, paying our bills so the lights stay on here for our continued work and even ensuring our 300 employees get paid at the end of the month.

Our work is essential.

We are not entertainment (though employees’ laughter could argue otherwise on certain days with co-workers at the co-op).

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We are essential.

And we’ll remain operational, working for your family and ours, as long as we’re able.

We are a business that supports the consumer at every angle, and it is a privilege to carry such heavy weight on our shoulders that so many depend on us. We thank you for that opportunity.

Together, we have experienced adversity as an industry, as a nation, and as a world. More importantly, we have always navigated through it –  and we will, again.
Thank you for making our daily work essential.

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You can read more about our commitment to safety here.

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Salute To Service: Bryant Team

We received 68 nominations from Harvest Land customers and employees nominating their peers in 2019 for our Salute to Service program. This was an amazing response to a simple ask! Salute to Service Banner

This week we wanted to share with you the nomination that took home second place. We’re proud of the work this team – because it took everyone! – did in the community during a time of great need. Read on:

We are nominating Allen Bollenbacher and his entire team at the Bryant location. In the spring of 2019, a tornado touched down on the Blackford/Wells county line north of Montpelier.  The tornado ran straight east up the county line impacting farm after farm for 5 miles.  The tornado struck at night and everyone along the road awoke to a heartbreaking scene of destruction.  Luckily only a few suffered building damage, but trees everywhere were broken and lain flat. Not long after daylight, Allen and several employees from the Bryant Coop showed up at our farm.  The cleanup was overwhelming and took our family days to finish.  What Allen and his team did that first day made it possible to get out of the driveway and move about the farm to care for livestock and repair fence. The most impressive thing though, is what they did when they left us. Allen and his team worked their way east down the county line helping a long string of my neighbors in the same way.  I have heard from several that the help was greatly appreciated. We all need to remember to help one another and to demonstrate that kindness and compassion beyond our familiar circle of family and friends.  No doubt Allen and his crew first showed up to help our family.  For years, we’ve worked together with the folks at HarvestLand Bryant to improve our farm operation, but we weren’t customers that morning.  We were just folks that needed a hand.  Allen and his team proved that as they worked their way east helping out my neighbors all along the way.

Submitted by John & Michael Maddox

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Ag Center Manager Allen Bollenbacher
Thank you, Allen and the entire Bryant team, for doing the right thing on behalf of our cooperative. Your service to the community made a difference in the lives of many!

The Salute to Service program started over again in January. If you encounter a wonderful experience with a Harvest Land employee, we encourage you to shoot us a note at nominations@harvestlandcoop.com or call our CEO, Scott Logue, at 765.962.1527.

 

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Celebrating 90 Years of Innovation and Cooperation

In 1930, America was on the cusp of the  Great Depression and the Dust Bowl began.

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But times weren’t all bad that year.

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Because it was in 1930 that the first diesel engine automobile trip was completed (Indianapolis to New York City) by Clessie Cummins, founder of the Cummins Motor Company.

And in 1930, Hostess Twinkies were invented.

But perhaps our favorite fact is that, in our east-central Indiana area, the Articles of Incorporation for the Wayne County Farm Bureau Cooperative Association, Inc. were signed and notarized on March 12, 1930.

Meaning, Harvest Land Co-op will turn 90 years old on March 12. 

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We’ve changed a lot in that time! We are no longer a resource for seed potatoes, lumber or even poultry.

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Today, we’ve evolved to meet our farmer-owners’ needs, and those have certainly changed over time. Technology, demand, family dynamics, weather trends, markets and beyond have each been factors of our longevity and our story.

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In ninety years, we’ve also joined forces with 18 other cooperatives in our trade area to better serve the members.

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Much changes in ninety years, but our commitment to the cooperative spirit remains unwavering. We thank you and your family for the partnership you’ve shown us over the last ninety years.

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We would not be here had a group of farmers not wanted to find a better way to do business, together. And we’ll only remain strong – and around for another ninety years! – because of our farmer-members.

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