Posts By: Anne Moore

Troy Brown Joins Form-A-Feed as Forage Product Manager


Troy Brown of Reedsville, WI joined the Form-A-Feed team as the Forage Product Line Manager in September 2017.

Troy has over 30 years of practical forage management experience that he brings to the Form-A-Feed team, and has a deep understanding of all aspects of forage best management practices, fermentation, and forage microbial technology. His role at Form-A-Feed will be to manage the various forage products, services, and programs that Form-A-Feed offers.

“I am very excited to be joining the Form-A-Feed family,” Troy explained. “My goal is to develop a deep understanding of our customer’s needs. Form-A-Feed has an excellent reputation built on a foundation of honesty and integrity. These values made it easy for me to join the Form-A-Feed team.”

Doug Fjelland, Form-A-Feed Executive Vice President states, “the addition of Troy Brown to the Form-A-Feed team will bring even more customized forage services to the progressive farmers we serve throughout the United States. Improving forage quality improves productivity and profitability for both the animal and the farm. We couldn’t be more pleased to have Troy be a part of our team to help farmers maximize their forage program and profitability.”

Have a question for Troy about his services with Form-A-Feed? You can contact him at

Original Source: Form-A-Feed

Advantages to Fall Fertilizer

Many ask what are the advantages of fertilizing in the fall over spring? Usually in the fall there is less moisture to deal with then in the spring, which means less compaction from machinery. You also have less of a chance of runoff due to less rain fall compared to spring.

Fall Fertilizing is also more manageable. Your cooperative is more available with having more time, people and machinery to use and run in the fall. One of the greatest advantages as the Farmer is you don’t have to hold up spring planting while waiting for your fertilizer application.

In addition, fall tillage ensures that the fertilizer is incorporated into the root zones. All in all, fall tillage can save you time, money and the stress of getting your fields prepared and planted.

Lastly, you have a great opportunity to save money with our Fall Fertilizer financing programs. Contact your Agronomist today to ask about our Fall Fertilizer programs or to schedule your application.

By Matt McKown, Agronomy Sales Manager


Weekly Grain Update – October 24, 2017



Many of you have interest in storing your corn or beans at the co-op, and I thought I would take a minute to summarize our storage programs again for this fall as many are asking about specific details.  Please remember that Delayed Price is your most economical choice for us to store your grain.  For grain placed into Delayed Price, the grain is only shrunk down to 13.0% on beans or 15.0% on corn, the storage rate is cheaper, and the monthly storage charge follows the grain and is not invoiced monthly.  Monthly storage charges are simply taken out of the settlement when the grain is sold.  The biggest disadvantage to Delayed Price is that you give up title to your grain in exchange for the above benefits.  This allows us to move your grain out of our facilities if you have not priced it yet, and it keeps us from plugging up with grain.  There is no time restriction for grain placed into Delayed Price.  You may keep your bushels in this program for as long as you wish.  There is no “dumping” fees or any other service charges associated with Delayed Price.  Here is a summary of what storage programs we are offering this harvest:

DELAYED PRICE:    Beans will be shrunk and dried to 13.0% moisture and corn will be shrunk and dried to 15.0% moisture.  Delayed price charges will be 4 cents per bushel per month until 10/1/18, and deducted from grain settlement.

OPEN STORAGE:    Beans will be shrunk and dried to 12.0% moisture and corn will be shrunk and dried to 14.0% moisture.  Storage charges will be 5 cents per bushel per month until 10/1/18, and invoiced monthly.

GRAIN BANK:    TO BE USED FOR FEED ONLY.  Beans will be shrunk and dried to 12.0% moisture and corn will be shrunk and dried to 14.0% moisture.  Storage charges will be 5 cents per bushel per month, and invoiced monthly.


Filter Prices Got You Down?


Preventative maintenance like engine oil and fuel filter changes are part of farming, but having to change a fuel filter between oil changes, can not only be a pain in the keester, it can get expensive too!  As we have discussed previously, the high pressure and heat from the new engines are causing fuel to “cook,” creating a gum like substance and carbonaceaous deposits.  These two items will plug up a filter quicker than you can say “I don’t have time for this!”  The injection stabilizer in Cenex fuels helps prevent the fuel from “cooking” thus keeping your filter cleaner for longer.

With the average cost of a tractor fuel filter being $100, don’t you owe it to yourself to use a fuel that will give your filters the long life they deserve?

Please listen to Joe Trudeau, as he explains how one small change in fuel made a huge difference for his business.

By Kim Leisner, Energy Sales Manager

Fuel Injector Problems Are No Problem for Us!

Fuel injector deposits have become a regular occurrence in Tier 3 & Tier 4  engines.  Injector deposits create power loss, fuel economy reduction and even complete injection failure.  As we all know, there is not time for any kind of failure when you are planting or harvesting your crops.

Cenex fuels are specially formulated to prevent injector problems due to the new engine standards. Our detergents keep the fuel clean, while injection stabilizers make sure the injectors stay clean, then there is the corrosion inhibitor that helps keep the rust away.

Look at the difference Cenex fuel can make on your injections…

Fuel injector

Fouled Injector

Fuel injectorEnhanced Cenex Premium Diesel®


Please watch as some of our friends from the West talk about their experience with standard #2 vs Cenex fuels.


Weekly Grain Update – October 17, 2017


The USDA was out with its October crop report last Thursday and gave the market some numbers that were not expected.  In corn, they raised this year’s yield by 1.9 bpa to 171.8 which raised total corn production by 95 M bu up to 14.28 B bu this year.  They also raised feed usage by 39 M bu for last year.  When the dust settled, corn carryout for old crop was lowered by 55 M bu to 2.295 B bu but the carryout for next year was left virtually unchanged at 2.34 B bu.

On beans, the USDA lowered this year’s production by .4 bpa down to 49.5, and also reduced last year’s production by .1 bpa down to 52.  This reduction in yield trimmed last year’s production by 11 M bu down to 4.296 B bu and they also increased seed and residual on last year’s crop by 23 M bu.  After the changes were made, the bean ending stocks from last year was reduced by 44 M bu from 345 M bu down to 301 M bu.  This 44 M bu reduction in ending stocks virtually flowed straight through this year’s S & D table to reduce it as well by 45 M bu from 475 to 430 M bu.  These changes in the bean complex surprised the market and caused the funds to add to their already long position.  We have seen this time and time again where the bean ending stocks starts relatively big, near 500 M bu and by the end of the crop year, it gets trimmed down to 300 M bu or so.  This is a relatively big change for beans and will likely add a layer of support under the market long term.  The real test will be determined if the Chinese and others continue to buy our beans.  Bean exports remain relatively good this year, and if this continues, ending stocks could continue to be trimmed further.

Forward Contracts

Folks, our corn crop is big and getting bigger.  Unlike beans, we do not have much of an export program this year.  Corn is being tucked away, off the market, in any place possible by the farmer.  Big crops generally get bigger and I see the same thing this year.  The market’s job is to press the nearby price low enough to stimulate additional demand.  This process of lowering the cash corn price while leaving deferred prices the same puts big carries in the market.  You can take advantage of this by forward contracting much better prices in the corn market for summer delivery or forward contracting for next fall delivery today.  However, you must sell these levels relatively soon, and not wait until we get to that point on the calendar as the carry will evaporate, and the cash price will remain basically the same level it is today by the time we get to July.  In order to lock in the premium for your farm, you need to forward contract these levels today for delivery sometime in the future.

In beans, the market has given you a wonderful opportunity to sell additional bushels needed for cash flow until you move your corn.  Isn’t it amazing how November bean futures rallied to exactly the 10.02 level on Friday which is basically the exact level of the 61.8% retrace of the entire July – August slide?  The real test for the bean market now remains.  Most times, once a market retraces 50 to 61.8% of a move, it will resume the previous trend.  In this case, the previous trend was lower, and judging by the amount of beans we purchased as well as what all commercials purchased on Thursday and Friday, we saw significant farmer bean selling after the report.  All of this selling weighed on futures at the close on Friday.  If you still need to sell beans this year, I would seriously look at this opportunity.  The high water mark of November bean futures of $10.02 reached on Friday could well remain the high level for nearby bean futures for months to come.

Focus on Targets

In the meantime, I encourage all of you to use targets to generate more profits for your farming operation.  Let’s figure out what level you feel comfortable selling, and then either call us or simply use our online target system where you can place a target all on your own.  I firmly believe in rewarding the market when it rallies, and if a target gets filled, simply place another target on beans 20-25 cents higher or 10-15 cents higher on corn or wheat.  Our online target system is simple, easy, free, and we have many people using the system today.  If you have interest, please click here and it will direct you to our online offer center.  If you have any questions, please call us at the Readfield office, and we will be happy to walk you through this process.

As always, if I can help you with anything, please call me at Readfield.



Weekly Grain Update – October 9, 2017

soybean harvest


The USDA will be out with their October crop report this Thursday at 11 am.  I continue to recommend growers to use target orders on report days as the market gyrates greatly almost immediately once the numbers are released.  Many times we see opportunities present themselves moments after the numbers are known but vanish by the time the market closes.  If you still have bushels you must sell for this fall, lets take advantages of these opportunities as they will likely be few and far between in the coming days.

Many areas of the Corn Belt received rain over the last few days.  Most areas received between 1.5 to 3 inches of rain since Wednesday.  This quickly stopped any bean cutting for the moment.  Locally, we are seeing no rain in the forecast until Saturday.  This will allow the beans to dry out or give you the opportunity to go after some early corn before switching back to beans later in the week.  The rain might have been a blessing in disguise as most beans were terribly dry.  Most beans being brought into our facilities were testing 9-12% moisture.  Obviously, 13% is dry and anything under this moisture is hurting you with excess shrink as the beans loose moisture in the field.  With the rain, you will now have the opportunity to cut beans much closer to 13% which will help boost bushels per acre.

This rain will put a damper on harvest selling pressure for the next day or so.  As a result, we have seen bean futures catch a bid and are currently moving higher again.  Currently, Nov ’17 bean futures are at $9.75.  I still feel we have an opportunity to rally Nov bean futures to the $9.85 to $10.00 level as this will represent the 50% to 61.8% retrace of the entire July – Aug slide.  Again, if Nov bean futures can rally into this window, I would seriously consider selling all remaining beans that must be sold this calendar year for your operation.  This would create a double top on the charts and Nov bean futures could easily fall quite dramatically if achieved.

On corn, we are seeing December corn futures have a decent amount of support at $3.50.  I don’t believe Dec corn futures will fall below $3.45 as the farmer is not selling corn.  We continue to see the farmer selling beans for cash flow and will tuck away every kernel of corn as possible.  This will cause futures and basis to remain firm.  The real test will be in two weeks when nearly all of the Corn Belt is in active corn harvest.  If we cannot break Dec futures during this period, this will likely be the low for the year.  Futures and basis will react to what the farmer does.  If he is not a seller, the basis and futures will be forced to do the work to create movement.  I encourage all of you tucking corn away in every crack on your farm to NOT get complacent.  In order to protect your operation, you need to be proactive and lock in corn sales later in the crop year where futures and basis is much stronger.  The corn market is offering excellent carry, where you can gain approximately 30-40 cents per bushel if you can hold the corn until July, for example.  You can only lock in this carry if you forward contract the bushels now for July delivery.  You cannot wait until July and sell it spot because the cash carry will vanish by then as the cash price will likely be very similar to what it is today.

As you deliver your grain into our CHS Larsen Co-op elevators this fall, please communicate with your drivers on what you wish to do with your grain when delivering.  At the elevator, the scale operator will need to know if you want to sell your grain, place it on an existing contract, place it in Delayed Price or Open Storage, or into Grain Bank if you are using it for feed.  It is critical that we know what to do with your grain BEFORE the truck leaves the elevator.  This will help to make sure there are no delays in processing your grain deliveries.  Unfortunately, if your truck leaves without telling us what to do with your grain, we will be forced to place your grain into Delayed Price and title will be lost.  Please avoid this mistake by communicating with your drivers or simply calling our office so we do not make a mistake on processing your grain shipments.  We greatly appreciate your help in this matter.

For farmers delivering into Seymour, there is a major construction project being completed at the main intersection of town.  Please look at the easiest way to get into our facility by the map posted online.  Any questions, please call the Seymour or Center Valley office.

As always, if I can help you with anything, please call me at Readfield.


Is Your Diesel Fuel Up to the Challenge


About 10 years ago engine designers were tasked with new EPA standards for less emissions and better fuel economy.  In 2007, the common rail system was born!  Since then more stringent emissions standards have been put in place.  This has created upgrades to the common rail system, since 2010 there have been two major upgrades performed, these upgrades have created a diesel fuel engine that has extreme pressure and heat with lower tolerances.  The major side effect of this heat & pressure has been “cooked fuel.”  Over the past 10 years farmers are seeing more filter changes and higher down time than ever before.

I have created a four part series with some examples of how Cenex Ruby Fieldmaster & Roadmaster have come to the rescue and addressed these fuel related issues that are associated with the common rail system.  Please turn your sound up on your computer or phone and watch this overview of the common rail system as it pertains to you.

K is for Potassium, Why soil K levels need monitoring.


Soil sampling for pH has become a staple in decision making on farms across the state that grow alfalfa. The second soil test nutrient that is monitored heavily is phosphorus, this is due to the need to maintain soil P levels for compliance and soil conservation. The forgotten tool in a routine soil sample is the soil K level. Potassium is the key nutrient that drives yields in corn silage, alfalfa, soybeans and grain corn.

The majority of potassium stays in the cells of plant tissue in the fall, meaning that any removal of Stover yields a large export of soil K from fields. Rock River Labs out of Watertown have followed trends in soil K levels. Their research has shown the levels of soil K have been increasing in the low and very low categories over the last 5 years for a total of an 8% increase in these categories. This paired with the research by UW Madison has shown a decrease level of 1.5ppm / year. This is problematic to crop production as the remedial process for soil K can be a 5-8 year adventure.

So my advice for you is to monitor your soil K levels before they become low or very low, and affect your yields for 5-8 years. Soil K removal for 60 bushel beans is 70lbs K , alfalfa at 5 ton is 245 lbs K, and corn silage at 20 ton is 145lbs K . Converted to Potash this is 115, 395, and 230 lbs respectively. This can become a huge amount of K removal from a field in a 4/5/or 8 year rotation. Ask yourself if your current rotation and fertility programs are able to address the yields that you have removed from the fields. If you feel that you have not replaced the soil K levels that have been removed, contact myself, or your CHS Larsen agronomist to talk about monitoring your soil K levels with soil testing and proper fertilization.

By Alex Yost, CHS Larsen Co-op YieldPoint Specialist 

Deferred Pay Fall Applied Fertilizer


Think back just a few months and we’ll remember the many challenges we faced with the wet spring and summer. One of those challenges was applying fertilizer to your fields. Now ask ourselves “What can I do differently to avoid this challenge next spring?” The answer, “Apply your P and K fertilizer in the fall.” Applying P and K fertilizer in the fall has even greater advantages, than just eliminating a challenge in a wet spring. It is a very sound and proven agronomic practice. Your fertilizer is where it should be working for you. It’s prior to spring soil compaction as it is not an issue. It eliminates a trip across the field in the spring giving you more time to get your crops planted, and CHS Larsen Co-op can provide more prompt service as well as fertilizer prices are historically lower this time of year.

I often get remarks like “I’d like to apply my fertilizer in the fall but I don’t know if I want to tie money up for that long.”

We at CHS Larsen Co-op have a tool for you to use to take advantage of the best of both worlds.

You can apply your fertilizer this fall and not pay for it until March 31, 2018. As far as your cash flow goes it is similar to spring applied fertilizer without the hassle of dealing with unknown spring conditions.

And just like the guy on television selling the one time offer deal. — “Wait, we are not done yet.”

We’ll include custom application charges too, buy wait there is more, we can include your crop input financing under this program as well.

Think about working smarter, getting field work done in a timelier manner and taking the guess work out of what the weather will do next spring by applying your P and K this fall.

Ask your CHS Larsen Co-op agronomist about this financing program or call Dave Banks at 920-982-1111.

By Dave Banks, CHS Larsen Co-op Loan Officer

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