Magazine > August/September 2010
August/September 2010 Articles
Grain Engulfment Prevention
As summer nears its end, elevators are preparing for an influx of grain: cleaning bins, inspecting machinery and investing in new equipment to handle what will no doubt be another record harvest. During this time new employees will be brought on board, and seasoned veterans will be bracing themselves, knowing what to expect from peak time. In the midst of making these necessary preparations, management also be reviewing its safety and training policies.
Ask yourself: When was the last...[Read More]
Happy Customers Spur Long-Term Success
Excellent customer service requires more than a thank you and a smile. It’s about meeting — and often times, exceeding — expectations before, during and after a transaction. Unfortunately, the rise of technology and innovation has fostered a drive-thru mentality in many of our daily interactions; as a result, we as a society have grown impatient, feeling entitled to instant gratification. For example, equating waiting with poor service. Unconcerned with the reasons behind the...[Read More]
Rising’ To The Occasion
With a corporate mantra like “Rising”, it’s fair to assume exciting things are happening at Aurora Cooperative. This bold statement is based in the firm’s pride in moving itself away from the old cooperative mentality, and shifting its focus toward a progressive business approach.
For more than a century, Aurora Cooperative, a grain marketer and agricultural supplier, has been a partner in the success of agriculture in its part of the world. Serving Nebraska and surrounding states, the...[Read More]
Bigger Crops Pose Big Challenges
As they eyed the line of trucks waiting at the scales, the sole owner and manager of an imaginary Midwest elevator, Dave, says to his son Gary: “It seems like yesterday when country elevators were selling for 10 cents on the dollar — couldn’t hardly give ‘em away. Guess that was six or seven years ago, though. Now it seems like everybody’s expanding, and I read last week about a couple of big companies buying some country elevators and planning to overhaul them. Maybe we need to sit down...[Read More]
Feed Industry Anticipates Passage of Food/Feed Safety Bill
At this time a year ago, political analysts were betting the Senate’s version of the Food/Feed Safety bill, S. 510, would have passed in Q1 of 2010. Now, as we close in on the end of the year, it still hasn’t reached the floor and obstacles continue to hinder its passage.
In July of 2009, the House of Representatives passed the first version of the Food/Feed Safety bill (H.R. 2749) and Congress was slated to vote on the legislation shortly after the Healthcare Reform bill was passed. When...[Read More]
Picking Up the Pace
Keith Stone, the general manager at Eastern Feed and Grain, Inc. was still shaking his head as he reviewed his year-end financial statements. Revenues were off 20% and the organization was posting a (significant) loss for the first time in 15 years.
The results were shocking: Eastern Feed and Grain had done much better than just weather the storm in the recent past. In the three years leading up to the current year, the firm had posted year over year sales increases in the 10-15% range....[Read More]