It’s been too long since our last update, but we’ve been busy around the farm!
In January we hauled all the grain we had in storage, roughly 84,000 bushels in 9.5 days! We were blessed with good weather to get that done, even though there was snow on the ground. It was a little tougher to schedule than usual, as there had been an explosion in Decatur at ADM. The damage it caused required us to have times and appointments for each load delivered there. We were able to alternate loads delivered to our appointments at ADM Decatur with other delivery locations. We also delivered to ADM Farmer City, Tate and Lyle Decatur, and Cargill in Bloomington.
We’ve also been attending several grower meetings and educational events. The Farm Economic Summit by the University of Illinois was held in Peoria. It was a one day seminar focused on crop insurance, marketing, and the farm economic conditions in the state. The Farm Futures Business Summit was a two day conference held in Iowa City. The content focused on improved marketing, farm business management, financing in production agriculture, and environmental stewardship. The Farm Credit College was a one day event held in Springfield. The content was presented by Dr. Steve Johnson from Iowa State and Eric Snodgrass of the University of Illinois. The focus was on developing a practical marketing plan for you grain commodities and a big picture presentation on weather. The Agrisolutions Gateway to Success Conference was a single day event held in Edwardsville. Agrisolutions is the group the provides our farm accounting and record keeping software. The conference focused on financial bench-marking, ag lending, and farm taxes.
We have also begun a new project with Precision Conservation Management (P.C.M.) PCM is a not for profit group working with the NRCS and volunteer farmers with the goal of measuring the economic and environmental impacts of different conservation practices. We enrolled over 800 acres into there system. They track inputs, timing and types of fertilizer/pesticide applications, tillage practices, residue management, and several other parameters. It is a five year process and each year we will receive a report estimating the financial impact our stewardship practices are having as well as comparing us to our peers in the program. We feel it is in our best interest to take part and learn about these programs and fine tune our conservation practices before they become more regulatory in nature.
In the shop we’ve been busy getting machinery ready for spring. We rebuilt the Great Plains soybean planter we had been testing and have it ready to go. The Kinze corn planter needs some work as well. The parts have been ordered and will be here next week. Seed has started to be delivered and we have taken samples to Campaign to be tested for germination. Soybean seed is in tight supply due to its poor germination scores. We’ll have to monitor that situation as planting gets closer.