Be Still

After 27 inches of rain in the last 31 days for some parts of our trade territory, there is nothing like waking up to this forecast earlier this week:

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As we recover from another shower, we wanted to share with you a video from one of our customers, Alan Bays.

Four generations of Bays have used Harvest Land’s service and products, forming a business relationship that spans fifty years. Excellent reliability with fuels, competitive pricing, available purchasing options and a knowledgeable team are all qualities on which the Bays family relies on Harvest Land.

If the name sounds familiar, it should. The Bays were the cover family of our 2012 Annual Report.

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Justin Bays, Brian Bays,  Elle Contos, Bennett Contos and Sarah Contos

Brian Bays once said of the family’s history with Harvest Land:

“With Harvest Land we’ve sustained a very long-term, business relationship that has provided quality supplies and price-competitive opportunities. We’ve consistently had good relationships with Harvest Land employees, and they always strive to provide solutions for our operation.”  -Brian Bays

The Lapel area, where the Bays farm, has gotten the brunt of the 2017 torrential rains. It seems that if a shower hits Indiana, it’s sure to hit their farm.

But, there is still hope.

We invite you to take a look at this inspiring video from Alan, brother of Brian:

We are so proud to be a small part of Bays’ family operation.

 

 

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Faith & Farming

Faith and Farming: they go hand and hand:

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Some days, doesn’t it feel as though it began raining on Easter and hasn’t quit? While the naive mind might like to believe that farmers across the corn belt are putting in ponds as part of some water retention conservation project, you and I both know that just isn’t the case. You can drive through the countryside and see standing water in every direction.

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Rather than driving around the township with their best co-pilot and a steady dose of optimism, checking growth in the warm May sunshine, most growers in our area are riding around with the insurance adjuster looking at corn that has already been replanted or will be.

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Writer Lisa TerKeurst once wrote that “The space between our expectations and our reality is a fertile field. And often it’s a place where disappointment grows.” How true that is, and what fitting words when thinking of our 2017 planting season. Even when the field is flooded, the disappointment is able to grow within the rows.  I heard one farmer say that he didn’t even want to leave the house in the morning because he knew disappointment would greet his first step out the door.

You can’t blame him; it’s been a soggy and frustrating spring.

But you can’t lose faith, either.

I’ve often heard that God gives the toughest battles to His strongest soldiers but I believe there is more to that; although those in agriculture are certainly of resilient stock! I think God gives these times of disappointment to the ones who can be of example on how to stay the course amidst the frustration. He uses them as an example to others.

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I don’t know a farmer who plans on not planting in 2017 because of the amount of rain and cold air we’ve endured. I don’t know a farmer who has decided to sit this year out of farming. I don’t know a farmer who intends on selling farm because of 8 inches of rain.

The farmers we know are changing their course of action, recalculating their assumptions and adapting to the situation. The farmers we know are waiting it out and attending 6th grade graduations and dance recitals in the mean time. The farmers we know are trying really hard to exercise the patience their parents worked to instill in them.

Because the farmers we know
learned a long time ago that
faith and farming go hand and hand.

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Rain Makes (More Than) Corn

Spring storms have been unforgiving in much of the country over the last week. Our trade area, which includes eastern Indiana and western Ohio, has seen its share of rain, but we’ve experienced nothing like the destruction that moved through Oklahoma. It’s always easy to complain throughout the day about not getting in the fields…until you turn on the NBC evening news and Lester Holt’s lead story covers the F4 tornados shredding the helpless Oklahoma plains.

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Untimely rain makes planting season tough.

Untimely rain makes farmers frustrated by slowing their progress.

Luke Bryan has a special (slightly annoying to some people) way of reminding country music listeners that rain also makes corn.

 

While that song painfully gets stuck in your head,

we thought this week we’d take a look at:

rain makes

Rain Makes Farmers Catch Up on Book Work

Some things seem to go by the wayside when the wheels start turning and thstack paperwork.jpge seed begins to drop – and book work is one of them. I mean really, who wants to sit at a desk and balance numbers, pay bills and sort paper to achieve some kind of order when you can be in the field? No one.

So when the rain falls, farmers kind of get forced to bring organization to chaos. You can only sit in the cab of your 8100 while the rain comes down outside for so long before you become the talk of the township.

Rain Makes Farmers Spend Money

While you’re in the office catching up on book work, it’s only fitting that you stop to look through a few magazines that have gone unread, maybe catch up on a few emails, perhaps search the web. You may even – as the rain continues – sit back in your chair and think of all the improvements that you’ve considered over the last six months to 25 years to advance your operation.

To work smarter, not harder.Stack-of-Magazines-600x399.jpg

To keep up with changing technology.

To set your son – or grandkids – up for success.

The rain, as it turns out, emits some sort of special signal to farmers to move forward with making plans and finalizing decisions and spending money. Where do you think the term “rainy day fund” came from? Rain can get spendy.

Rain Makes Farmers Reconnect

I met an industry partner for lunch at a restaurant on the other side of the county earlier this week. It was a rainy day, preceded by a rainy night, and the perfect time to sit down for a meal that didn’t come from a Ziploc bag. During our visit, a local farm family came into the restaurant and I couldn’t help but watch their arrival in, out of the rain. First through the door was the great-grandmother: the matriarch of a successful farm family. Behind her came the great-granddaughter, blonde ponytail and maybe five-years-old; her grandmother, who had held the door, followed the child. “Three generations of farm gals out for lunch,” I thought to myself, “What a fun day for them.

Only moments passed before the restaurant door opened again.

Then, the farmer walked in.

The son of the great-grandmother.

The husband of the grandmother.

The granddad of the five-year-old blonde.

I couldn’t help but smile to myself:

This multi-generational lunch made possible by none other than the falling rain.

While farmers may be getting grumpy (that phrase, by the way, is one way a farmer described himself this week, those are not the writer’s words!) because of all the May rains, these rains have certainly opened an opportunity for other important events to take place. They’ve allowed for farmers to step out of the cab, shop or field and reconnect with those so important to them. Planting Widows become married once again, if only for a few days while the rain comes down.

Rain makes time for life’s good stuff,
like enjoying lunch with your
88-year-old mother
and five-year-old granddaughter.

Rain makes corn. (OK, that was the last Luke Bryan reference, we promise).

Rain makes farmers catch up on bookwork.

Rain makes farmers spend money.

Rain makes farmers reconnect.

Rain, as it turns out, may not be so bad,
after all.

(We’re certain you’ll agree in July.)