KC Wheat Futures Shift Gears

October/November 2010 | Departments | By Diana Klemme

2010 has been rough on hard red wheat farmers, merchants, and the Kansas City Board of Trade. Farmers watched KC wheat drift lower from late 2009 until harvest. Exporters struggled to sell hard red wheat before harvest against cheaper overseas offers. But adverse weather slashed Canada’s wheat crop by 17% and the FSU crop by almost 30% and wheat futures climbed as the scope of the problems widened.

Then a 1+ billion bushel US hard red wheat harvest arrived. Terminals were ready, the early...

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Elevator Pitches for Elevators

October/November 2010 | Departments | Drs. Joan Fulton, John Foltz, Nicole Olynk and C. Gustav Helmers

Elevator pitches, or elevator talks, have received considerable attention recently in the media and business press. Elevator pitches got their name because they were originally associated with the scenario where an entrepreneur had the time it took for the elevator to go from the lobby to the executive suite (about two minutes) to convince the would-be investor of the value of his/her business or invention. The concept has evolved and now is used to fit a variety of important interactions...

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Plucked For Success

October/November 2010 | Cover Story | By Jackie Roembke

Sanderson Farms, a fully integrated poultry producer, is committed to taking a fresh approach to everything it does, be it the implementation of new technology or the millions of pounds chicken it ships every week. The nation’s fourth largest poultry producer adheres to the same hometown values — honesty, integrity and innovation — that have been with it since the Sanderson brothers founded the company in 1947.

The company has more than 10,000 employees and over 770 independent growers....

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Negotiating State Commercial Feed Licensing Requirements

October/November 2010 | Departments | By Andrew Anderson and Jess Phelps

Over the years, states have increasingly regulated the sale of commercial feeds. States now typically require producers and distributors to obtain commercial feed licenses in advance of commencing operations within a given state. In addition to these commercial feed licenses, product label registration and inspection fees can also apply — further increasing the regulatory framework applicable in this area.

The regulations governing the sale and distribution of commercial feeds naturally...

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Seize the day, plan for tomorrow

October/November 2010 | Editors Note | Jackie Roembke

Showcase 2011 marks two milestones: The beginning of a new year of opportunities and Feed & Grain's 50th anniversary. Over the course of our tenure many innovations have graced the pages of this magazine — and many of you have been with us along the way. For this, many thanks and a promise that we will stay true to our mission of delivering in-depth coverage and insights to the feed, grain and allied processing industries. 

As always, our goal — here and in every issue of Feed & Grain — is...

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NGFA’s Country Elevator Conference & Trade Show

October/November 2010 | Special Report |

The National Grain and Feed Association will hold the 2010 edition of the 39th annual Country Elevator Conference and Trade Show Dec. 5-7 in Indianapolis at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown Hotel.

According to NGFA, the event is the single largest gathering of country elevator and feed manufacturer personnel. More than 500 industry members are expected to attend the day-and-a-half conference and trade show. The major trade show, which will occur Dec. 5-6 during the conference, is nearly...

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The Increasing Role of Federal Regulation Within the Commercial Feed Sector

October/November 2010 | Departments | By Andrew Anderson and Jess Phelps

By this time, most feed companies are thoroughly familiar with many of the issues presented with and by commercial feed regulations at the state level, including the widespread facility registration and inspection fee regimes that typify this field. State regulators, however, are not the only regulatory bodies interested in monitoring or controlling the commercial feed supply. Recently, federal agencies, particularly the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), are devoting an increasing...

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OSHA Steps It Up

October/November 2010 | Feature | By Shannon DeCamp

The tone has changed in the OSHA Administration and efforts to ramp up and crack down are already in motion. More resources are being allocated to enforcement, and penalties and fines are being increased. Now is a good time to review your safety program and ensure that it is iron-clad. Here is a brief overview of some of OSHA’s recent and planned actions.

Improved record keeping

Part of the stage for stronger enforcement was set with the initiation of the Recordkeeping National Emphasis...

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Happy Customers Spur Long-Term Success

August/September 2010 | Editors Note | Jackie Roembke

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...

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Feed Industry Anticipates Passage of Food/Feed Safety Bill

August/September 2010 | Departments |

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...

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Bigger Crops Pose Big Challenges

August/September 2010 | Departments | By Diana Klemme

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...

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Picking Up the Pace

August/September 2010 | Departments | By Dr. John Foltz and Dr. Jay Akridge

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....

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Rising’ To The Occasion

August/September 2010 | Feature | By Jackie Roembke

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...

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Grains on the Plains

June/July 2010 | Departments | By Diana Klemme

For years the wind blew freely through empty concrete silos and flats in the Western Plains. Space was readily available and storage rates were low; many traders figured a lot of space would never be filled again. But a dramatic shift has occurred that’s impacting logistics, basis, and should raise storage rates. The Plains farmer has steadily increased corn and soybean acreage, largely at the expense of reduced wheat and sorghum acreage. Plains corn and soybean yields were solid in the...

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Research Boosts Regulatory Efficiency

June/July 2010 | Departments |

A new method developed by scientists at the Office of the Texas State Chemist, the state agency that regulates the distribution of feed and fertilizer in Texas, will reduce the cost of testing, improve sensitivity to toxin levels and speed up turnaround. The project to develop this new method was led by Dr. Wei Li, postdoctorial research associate at the Office of the Texas State Chemist, and will also help gain insight for future research into the mechanics of how fumonisin forms.

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