Magazine > January 2014
January 2014 Articles
Familiar Feeling of Well-guarded Optimism with Farm Bill Prospects
The last few weeks of November saw great promise on Farm Bill passage fade into familiar skepticism, as issues related to both policy and politics continued to impede progress of the conference committee. House Republican leadership had set a deadline of Dec. 13 for Farm Bill conferees to bring a conference- negotiated bill to the House floor, a deadline that seemed all but out of reach when conference committee leaders halted their negotiations before the Thanksgiving break without...[Read More]
The Bagging Triangle
Dry bulk packaging is a simple yet sensitive balancing act. Maximum efficiency and productivity are at the center of a triangle with product, bag and machine at the vertices. This delicate balance is called The Bagging Triangle. It describes the relationships between the three corners and how the right combination can positively impact an operation’s bottom line. It’s a simple concept; a shift or change in one corner — the product, bag or machine — necessitates a change in one or...[Read More]
10 Things To See At IPPE
The International Production & Processing Expo is the most anticipated event of the year for the feed, poultry and meat industries. Consisting of three expos in one — International Poultry Expo, International Feed Expo and International Meat Expo — it is the ultimate destination for anyone involved in animal agriculture from production through processing.
There is truly something for everybody at the IPPE, ranging from hour-long educational sessions to off-site networking opportunities...[Read More]
Congress Moves on Key Waterways Infrastructure Act
With more than 60% of exported U.S. grain transported via inland waterways and a large percent of farm and ranch exports and imports moving through U.S. harbors, new projects for flood protection, port improvements and upgrades to the nation’s aging locks and dams are critical for all involved in agriculture, and the nation’s economy as a whole.[Read More]
Making the Most of your Marketing Efforts: Reconsider Your Customers Needs
Today’s business environment is more competitive than ever. As a successful manager in the feed and grain industry, you are actively responding to the many demands of this ever challenging business environment, which likely includes a multifaceted marketing program. It is easy to become focused on all of the immediate decisions that need to be made (such as approving the latest update to your website; finalizing the price quote that is due within the hour, etc.). In this column we invite...[Read More]
‘Need for Speed and Space’ Drives Co-op Expansion
Customer satisfaction is the core of Cottage Grove, WI-based Landmark Services Cooperative’s business plan. So, when the 15,000 member strong co-op’s board of directors conducted a study in 2012 to measure satisfaction with its Evansville, WI, shuttle loading facility, it knew something had to be done to improve the results.
The Evansville location serves producers across an expansive territory throughout southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois and has taken in a little more than 200...[Read More]
Web-based Feed Wizard Unites Manufacturer and Consumer
The rise of the Internet has created a new business atmosphere, one where businesses are playing a constant game of catch-up, with consumer trends changing as soon as industries grow comfortable with them. In response to this rapidly changing pace, the feed and grain industry is starting to implement newer, more efficient technology. In the last decade, facility automation has gone from cutting edge to the norm, tablets and smartphones have begun their integration into facility...[Read More]
King of the Hill: Who Feeds a Growing World?
What kid hasn’t played “King of the Hill” at some point — battling to the top, and then having to defend their hard-won turf? U.S. grain exporters have faced that same battle in recent years even as global consumption, production and imports around the world have climbed sharply. Let’s face it: The U.S. has lost our position at the top of the hill in most exports. Chart 1 shows that exports of corn, soybeans and wheat have been nearly flat overall for 20 years, while foreign exports have...[Read More]