January 25, 2021

Archives for August 2014

FOR SALE: Ayrshire Grain Facility

DSC_0863 compAryshire facility sale bill – PDF

Ayrshire Sealed Bid Form – PDF

LOCAL ADDRESS: 1307 Francis Street, Ayrshire, Iowa

Real Estate includes 5 steel bins 50,000 bushels each, flat grain storage 50,000 bushels (300,000 bushels total storage), 2 grain receiving pits, 1 grain leg (4,000 bph), 1 grain leg (3,000 bph), 10’X70’ pit scale and office. Excludes gas pump and tank.

A plat is available for inspection at the office of MaxYield Cooperative, 313 3rd Avenue NE, West Bend, Iowa.

SEALED BIDS will be accepted at the office of MaxYield Cooperative, 313 – 3rd Avenue NE, West Bend, Iowa (“Seller”) up to 5:00 p.m. on the 15th day of September, 2014. All bids shall be firm bids. The five highest bidders will be invited to attend the auction on the 17th day of September, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. (the “date of sale”) at the office of MaxYield Cooperative 313 – 3rd Avenue NE, West Bend, Iowa. The five highest bidders will then be given an opportunity to make further bids in person on the date of sale.

DSC_0868 compThis property will be sold on the following terms.

1. A Real Estate Contract in the form acceptable to Seller will be signed by the Buyer immediately after the sale. Ten percent (10%) of the bid amount shall be paid to the Seller, in good funds acceptable to Seller, upon execution of the Real Estate Contract. The balance of the bid amount shall be paid at closing on the date agreed upon by the parties (Final Payment Date) which shall occur no later than (30) days after the date of sale. Upon final payment, title shall be conveyed to Buyer by Quit Claim Deed.
2. The LP tank (located on the southeast portion of the Real Estate) and the radio communications repeater equipment (located at the top of the grain leg) together with the related items, are excluded from the sale. Seller shall have the right to remove the radio communications repeater equipment and related items at Seller’s expense up to 12 months after the date of sale. Within six months after the date of sale, Seller, at its expense, shall remove the LP tank, pump and plumbing but not the foundation for the LP tank.
3. Possession shall be given on the Final Payment Date. Buyer shall have the option on the date of sale to pay in good funds acceptable to Seller (in addition to the required payment of ten percent (10%) of the bid amount) an additional forty percent (40%) of the bid amount to the Seller at which time Buyer shall be entitled to take immediate possession of the Real Estate upon the delivery to Seller of a certificate of insurance evidencing casualty insurance upon the improvements in an amount greater than the remaining balance of the Real Estate Contract and liability insurance in the amount of $1,000,000.00 per claimant per incident. Seller shall be named as an additional insured up to the date of final payment. During the period of possession prior to the date of final payment, Buyer shall have the right to make improvements or repairs to the Real Estate but shall not be allowed to remove any improvements existing on the Real Estate as of the date of sale.
4. The Abstract of Title shall be continued at Seller’s expense and delivered to Buyer for examination.
DSC_0866 cmop5. Title shall be conveyed by Seller by Quit Claim Deed.
6. Real estate taxes, special assessments and utilities shall be prorated to date of possession or the Final Payment Date, whichever is earlier. Seller shall pay the costs of preparation of the Quit Claim Deed and transfer tax for the Quit Claim Deed.
7. The Real Estate is being sold in “AS IS” condition with all faults. Seller does not make any representations or warranties of any kind whatsoever, either express or implied, with respect to the Real Estate or any property that belongs to or is part of the Real Estate.
8. Office is served by city sewage system.
9. Seller reserves the right to reject any and all bids at the sole discretion of the Seller.

To view the property contact: Walt Reichert, Area Leader, 712-363-0758 (C), 712-852-2481 (O)
A copy of the proposed Real Estate Contract and Quit Claim Deed shall be available for inspection upon request.

The terms of this sale shall be subject to announcements that may be made as of the date of sale.

RYAN MAYLAND – Advanced Sales Intern

Ryan MaylandRyan Mayland had such a positive experience as a MaxYield agronomy and seed intern in 2013 that he wanted to come back this summer and dig deeper into agronomy sales.

“I liked MaxYield and the people I worked with last year,” said Mayland, 22, an agricultural studies major from Britt, who will graduate from ISU in May of 2015. “This time I was looking for more responsibility, which I definitely got.”

Q: What inspired you to study agriculture in college?
A: My dad, Keith, farms with my uncle and my grandpa, and I spent a lot of time on the farm when I was growing up. My high school ag teacher and FFA advisor, Paul Hauge, also influenced me. He’s a fun teacher, and I took as many ag classes with him as I could, including animal science and agronomy classes.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield advanced sales internship?
A: While I worked mainly with seed last year, I’ve gotten a lot of hands-on agronomy sales experience this year. I’m based in Emmetsburg, and I work mainly with SciMax Solutions clients. I already knew quite a few of the clients from working at MaxYield last summer.
I plan my own work schedule each day, so I set up meetings with clients to review their tissue sampling reports. I’ve also written up work orders for fertilizer blends, delivered seed and chemical orders, and helped with crop scouting. There’s also a lot of continuing education, too, through Answer Plot® events and seed meetings. Working with SciMax clients is big, because you learn just how advanced they are in their approach to precision ag.

Q: How have you benefited by having Greg Sweeney as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: Greg is really good at what he does and is good at helping you learn. Greg and the SciMax team are always willing to help. If I have any questions, there are a lot of people I can call for answers.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: I definitely want to work in agriculture. Since I want to be in northern Iowa, it’s good to get practical, hands-on experience in this area. I also want to be close to my family’s farm, because I like to help out, especially with harvest.
Interesting facts about Ryan

• Ryan enjoys hunting deer (bow and shotgun), ducks, and pheasants. He’s also the events specialist for the ISU Hunting Club and has been known to attend classes at ISU while still wearing his face paint and camouflage gear.

• An avid outdoorsman, Ryan also likes to go fishing at Spirit Lake and Five Island Lake and
enjoys catching bass.

• Since he’s a Cyclone fan, there’s a good chance you’ll find Ryan at ISU football games or men’s basketball games when he’s in Ames.

A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Greg Sweeney, seed team leader

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Ryan?
A: Ryan has a good work ethic, and I don’t have to worry about him staying busy. I talk to him a few times a week, and he manages his day-to-day duties. He also brings a fresh outlook on things and asks a lot of good questions about why we do things a certain way.

Q: What traits/skills does Ryan possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: Ryan is a people person who connects well with clients and MaxYield team members. It’s easy to strike up a conversation with him. He’s also knowledgeable about agronomy. As a second-year MaxYield intern, Ryan has learned the basics about MaxYield. This creates new opportunities to challenge him, whether he’s spending more time in the field or working more closely with clients. With second-year interns, we can take learning experiences to a whole new level.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?
A: Interns like Ryan help us during our busy time and allow us to bring more value to our clients. As we invest in the next generation of ag leaders, we also get to see how these students might fit into MaxYield as future team members. In turn, they get an inside look at MaxYield to see if we’re the right fit for them. This increases MaxYield’s odds of hitting more home runs when hiring new team members. ■


Jared Wellik – Crop Scouting/Soil Sampling Intern

Jared WellikWhen Jared Wellik wanted to build a broader base of ag knowledge, he was interested in applying for a MaxYield internship.

“We get MaxYield’s My Solutions magazine at home, and I’d read the interns’ stories,” said Wellik, 20, an agricultural studies major from Woden, who will be a sophomore at ISU. “I saw that MaxYield has an internship for just about anything you’re interested in.”

Q: What inspired you to study agriculture in college?
A: I grew up on a farm, where my parents, Jim and Carla Wellik, raise crops and sheep. Before I graduated from Garner-Hayfield-Ventura High School in 2013, I was heavily involved in 4-H and FFA, where I served as the chapter vice president and participated in ag sales competitions at the regional level. I’ve always been interested in agriculture and know that’s where I need to be.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield scouting/soil sampling internship?
A: Crop scouting is always a good first step in pursuing an agronomy experience, and I’ve had the chance to do this in MaxYield’s east territory. I know quite a few clients, since I’m from this area, and I’ve enjoyed meeting other growers. My internship has helped me learn how to communicate more effectively with growers.

Q: How have you benefited by having Kody Trampel as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: I’ve learned a lot from Kody, who is always willing to talk to me and answers my questions right away. He’s easy to relate to, because he’s a former MaxYield intern who knows what I’m going through. The whole MaxYield team is very knowledgeable and friendly. My internship has been a great experience.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: I’d like to return to my hometown and help my dad on the farm. I’m also interested in ag sales, because I like talking with growers and helping them improve their production. I could see myself selling seed or livestock feed. My long-term goal is to take over the management of
our farm. My younger brother, Mark, is also interested in farming.

Interesting facts about Jared

• Jared helped with MaxYield’s Forest City parade entry this summer.

• An experienced livestock producer, Jared enjoys raising hogs, cattle, and sheep. He and his brother, Mark, have shown livestock at the Iowa State Fair for many years.

• Jared is involved in many activities on campus at ISU, including the Block & Bridle Club’s beef and swine interest groups, the Beginning Farmers Network, and the Agri- Marketing Management Operations group.

• In his free time, Jared enjoys trap shooting.

A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Kody Trampel, agronomy specialist

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Jared?
A: Jared came into this internship with a fresh perspective. He is always willing to learn and helps us look for ways to stay competitive. I also like his willingness to ask questions. Since
I was a MaxYield intern three years ago, I can relate to his experiences and am glad to help point him in the right direction.

Q: What traits/skills does Jared possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: Jared is a great people person with good communication skills. He can sit down and have a conversation with anyone. That’s important when he reports back to MaxYield clients after scouting their fields.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?
A: Summer internships give students a good way to gain hands-on experience while earning income to pay for college. The interns also provide another helping hand at MaxYield and can offer new ideas when you’re providing solutions for clients. The internship program is getting MaxYield’s name out there on college campuses, so we’re doing something right. ■


Brock Beadle – Grain Operations Intern

Brock BeadleWant to know what a MaxYield internship is really like? Ask a former intern. After Brock Beadle talked to 2012 intern Ben Matson from Buffalo Center, he was convinced this was the right opportunity.

“Ben recommended this internship to me, and I can see why,” said Beadle, 22, an ag studies major from Swea City, who will graduate from ISU in December of 2014. “I’d definitely recommend a MaxYield internship.”

Q: What inspired you to study agriculture in college?
A: I grew up on a crop farm near Swea City and have always been interested in agriculture. I was involved with FFA at North Sentral Kossuth High School before I graduated in 2010. I studied agriculture at Iowa Central Community College before transferring to ISU. I also help out my older brother, Brandon, who farms with my grandfather, Clifford Beadle.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield grain operations internship?
A: My internship has given me a good understanding of the grain business and the cooperative world. I’ve been based in Belmond, where I’ve loaded trains, dried corn, loaded and unloaded trucks, and moved grain throughout the facility. No two days are alike. I also like the flexibility of the MaxYield internship. If I want to learn something about agronomy, MaxYield gives me these opportunities.

Q: How have you benefited by having Dave Hubka as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: Dave and the MaxYield team always answer my questions and help me learn. I’ve also gained a lot of responsibility since I’ve been here.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: I’d like to stay in the Midwest, and I’d definitely like to work in agriculture.
Interesting facts about Brock

• During his years at ISU, Brock has worked part-time at CRD Advisors, a seed research company near Ames. Brock cleans and treats seed, bags seed, and helps with fieldwork.

• In his free time, Brock likes to hunt, fish, and spend time with friends.

• Brock enjoys watching college sports, including ISU football.

A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Dave Hubka, Belmond location leader

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Brock?
A: Brock is ambitious, asks good questions, is self-sufficient, and can work independently. It’s also a plus that he’s mechanically inclined.

Q: What traits/skills does Brock possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: Brock is a go-getter and a fast learner. He’s also friendly and understands the importance of client care, which makes MaxYield stand out in a positive way. He’s got every aspect
MaxYield wants in a team member.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?

A: I like to help interns see all the divisions of MaxYield, so they can find the right fit for their interests. Our interns play a key role in providing solutions to our clients, and we enjoy helping them learn new skills. We hope interns like Brock will want to come back to MaxYield someday so they can apply these skills as full-time team members.


SVEN NIELSON – Crop Scouting/Soil Sampling Intern

Sven NielsenSome students know exactly what career path they want to follow, while others, like Sven Nielson, want to explore their options before they make a decision.

“I wanted to get clarity about whether I’m on the right career track,” said Nielson, 20, an ag education major from Albert City, who is a senior at ISU.

After his friend and fellow ISU student Haley Banwart shared her experiences as a 2013 MaxYield intern, Nielson was interested in how MaxYield could help him learn more about the diverse careers available in ag today.

Q: What inspired you to study agriculture in college?
A: I grew up around agriculture, because my grandparents are farmers. I also enjoyed FFA during high school. Before I graduated from Sioux Central High School in 2012, I served as chapter president and competed in contests for creed speaking and extemporaneous speaking. I’ve learned that there are many different things I can do with an ag degree.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield crop scouting/soil sampling internship?
A: I wanted to learn more about agronomy, along with meeting new people and expanding my network. I’ve been based out of the West Bend/Whittemore area, where I’ve helped with agronomy work orders, soil sampling, and crop scouting. I’m glad that MaxYield let me spend time with Eric Goodman to learn more about SciMax Solutions and precision ag. I’ve seen how many variables you have to account for in farming. MaxYield is a great company that makes you feel like you’re part of the team. The biggest thing they’ve taught me is the importance of building strong relationships with your clients.

Q: How have you benefited by having Tim Bruns as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: Tim is very down to earth and helpful, especially if something isn’t working quite right. Like the rest of the MaxYield team, Tim talks with you, not down to you, and helps you learn. Once you get the hang of things, he gives you the reins.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: While I don’t know exactly what the future holds, I can see myself working outside of Iowa after I graduate.

Interesting facts about Sven

• Sven is interested in earning a graphic design minor this fall at ISU.

• On campus, Sven participates in collegiate FFA and the Iowa State University Corn Club.

• Sven stays busy with two jobs during the school year. He works for a tree trimming and landscaping company in Ames. He also works at Clyde’s Sports Grill in the Union Drive Community Center on campus.
A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Tim Bruns, agronomy specialist

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Sven?
A: Sven is very eager to learn and asks questions if he doesn’t understand something. He’s
also another set of eyes looking at a situation and may see things from a perspective that I hadn’t considered. These two things have helped me evaluate how I respond to MaxYield clients who have questions about situations in their operations.

Q: What traits/skills does Sven possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: Sven has a great work ethic and is willing to go above and beyond. He’s also very client
focused and picks up on things fast.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?
A: The interns get a chance to see if their summer job is something they would like to pursue as a career. While Sven is currently an ag education major, he has been wondering if an agronomy position would interest him. His MaxYield internship helped him learn about some of the tasks an agronomist performs. In addition, the internship program gives MaxYield a chance to evaluate potential team members’ abilities and attributes in everyday work situations. Since the interns also get to evaluate MaxYield as a potential employer, it truly is a win-win situation for both parties.


COLLETE HAAG – Grain Accounting Intern

Collete HaagCollete Haag became acquainted with MaxYield during her senior year of high school, when the cooperative helped support North Union High School’s Pink Out basketball game, which raised money for breast cancer research.

“I was very impressed with MaxYield, which cares about local schools and local communities,” said Haag, 19, an accounting major from the Buffalo Center/Ledyard area, who is starting
her sophomore year at ISU. “That’s why I was interested in a summer internship here.”

Q: What inspired you to study accounting with an ag emphasis in college?
A: My dad, Tom, farms by Ledyard, and my mom, Patti, works at Bank Plus in Ledyard as a loan secretary. I’ve always liked math and enjoy making numbers balance. I became interested in accounting through my older sister, Courtney, who is a certified public accountant (CPA) with
Deloitte in Des Moines.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield accounting internship?
A: While I didn’t know a lot about grain accounting when I started, I’ve learned a lot about it and agriculture in general. I settle the price-later contracts from the grain MaxYield’s clients deliver and also settle the contracts for the grain MaxYield delivers to end users. I balance and record the hedges we put in every day from FC Stone. In addition, I work with Cory Thilges, MaxYield’s controller, on a variety of accounting projects. I’ve even gotten to hedge some of the grain, which was a little scary. Fortunately, everyone on the MaxYield team is very friendly and is willing to help me and answer my questions. They also encourage you to try new things, and there are lots of areas where you can learn at MaxYield. One day I ran the scale at the West Bend elevator, where I got to weigh the trucks, run the probe, and meet the clients. I’ve also helped Susan Post, MaxYield’s chief financial officer, count inventory for the east area for the company’s year-end audit.

Q: How have you benefited by having Rick Abrahamson as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: Having a mentor is a really good thing. Rick is a really nice guy, and it’s easy to ask him questions. While he shows me what to do, he also lets me figure out things on my own, which helps me learn problem-solving skills.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: I really like grain accounting and I’m interested in returning to northern Iowa after graduating.
I would like to work for a private company and in the agriculture industry, too.

Interesting facts about Collete

• Collete serves as treasurer of Alpha Kappa Psi, a business fraternity at ISU, and also plays intramural sports on campus.

• In high school, Collete was an outstanding student-athlete at North Union High School. She played shortstop on the softball team, which earned runner-up state championship honors one year.

• In her free time, Collete likes to go boating at Okoboji and visit her sister in Des Moines.

A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Rick Abrahamson, corporate grain accounting

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Collete?
A: Collete has been a real asset to the grain department with her accounting background. She learns quickly, and her positive attitude makes her a joy to work with.

Q: What traits/skills does Collete possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: She’s more than willing to jump in and help, plus she’s organized and precise, which is important with this kind of work.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?
A: It’s fun to work with interns like Collete. I appreciate their enthusiasm and enjoy mentoring them and helping them see all the career possibilities that exist in accounting and agriculture.



ASHLEY SMEBY – Communications Intern

Ashley SmebyAshley Smeby admits that she was a little leery of working in the cooperative world after an unstructured internship at a cooperative last summer didn’t help her reach her goals.

“I wanted to learn something new, however, and I’d heard good things about MaxYield,” said Smeby, 19, an agronomy/international agricultural relations major from Garner who is starting her sophomore year at Iowa State University (ISU). “It has been a really great experience.”

Q: What inspired you to study agriculture in college?
A: I was raised on a swine and crop farm near Garner and grew up riding with my dad in the tractor. I always knew I wanted to study agriculture. During my senior year of high school, I job shadowed Kody Trampel, a MaxYield agronomy specialist, which was interesting.

Q: What have you enjoyed about your MaxYield communications internship?
A: While MaxYield isn’t a huge company, there are so many opportunities here. I’ve had the chance to work on MaxYield’s tractor calendar, which is fun, since my grandpa restores tractors. I will also never look at My Solutions magazine the same way again, because I’ve seen how much work it takes to conduct the interviews, write the articles, and set up the photo shoots. I’ve also had the chance to job shadow Rachel Norby at SciMax Solutions to learn more about her career path in precision ag. It has been fun to work with the other MaxYield interns, too. I’ve shot videos of them on the job for MaxYield’s YouTube channel. I’ve also set up tours so we could visit the Hobarton facility, the Lakota facility, and a tractor cab assembly plant in Waterloo. This is so much more than a summer job. It also says a lot about MaxYield that some interns come back for a second internship here.

Q: How have you benefited by having Chad Meyer as your mentor at MaxYield?
A: Chad has been very helpful, and he is always available when I have questions. He’s also interested in my future career plans. The mentoring is one of the best parts of a MaxYield internship.

Q: What are your career goals after graduation?
A: I want to stay in the Midwest and get into ag sales. I’m glad MaxYield gave me an internship to help build my skills. They give everyone a chance, whether you’re a freshman or a senior. I encourage other students to take advantage of this opportunity before you graduate.

Interesting facts about Ashley

• Ashley is involved in many activities on campus at ISU, including Sigma Alpha (a professional women’s ag sorority), Women in Agronomy Club, Iowa Corn’s collegiate team, and the Dance Marathon fundraiser, which benefits children with medical needs.

• Ashley and her younger sister, Brielle, show pigs each year at events from Cedar Rapids to Spencer and beyond, including the Iowa State Fair.

• Thanks to her Grandma Esther, Ashley learned the art of quilting and uses her talent to create t-shirt quilts for family and friends.

• Ashley has always enjoyed traveling and was thrilled to go to Australia on a 12-day ag study trip during the 2014 spring break. She and other ISU ag students learned about wheat, dairy, and more. Through her church (Zion Evangelical Church in Garner), Ashley has also participated in mission trips to coal-mining areas of West Virginia and Pennsylvania. She assisted with vacation Bible School classes and daycare activities for children, helped build homes with Habitat for Humanity, and contributed to other mission projects.

A Minute With MaxYield Mentor Chad Meyer, client relations/communications team leader

Q: What have you enjoyed about working with Ashley?
A: Ashley has a positive, can-do attitude. She comes to work every day ready to learn and get projects done. She has a great personality and builds trust with her teammates and clients quickly.

Q: What traits/skills does Ashley possess that fit well with MaxYield’s culture?
A: She is a self-starter and works great independently and as part of a team. I give her a list of priorities to complete, and she takes care of them. Ashley does a great job of setting her own schedule and getting tasks and projects done. She is very organized and can handle multiple projects at once. I don’t have to worry about whether the project will get done or not, because she handles every challenge with professionalism.

Q: How does MaxYield’s internship program benefit both students and MaxYield?
A: The internship program is important to MaxYield, because it provides a pool of potential team members for us to consider and build relationships with for future opportunities. It also allows us to get projects completed and helps with our workload during the busy summer season. The students gain real-world experience and networking opportunities that are second to none. Our goal is to give them an opportunity to see what life is like in their particular interest area and to provide experiences that will bolster their resume. We also want to put them in position to be considered for career opportunities when they become available at MaxYield.

Meet Mr. Fix-It: 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Jeff Bonnstetter

Jeff BonnstetterA great mechanic is a fine balance of gearhead, detective, computer technician, and magician who can fix just about anything. Skilled mechanics are also vital to MaxYield Cooperative. That’s why we’re grateful to have a master mechanic like Jeff Bonnstetter as our shop supervisor in West Bend.

Here are five things that you might not know about Jeff:
1. Jeff grew where he was planted. Jeff grew up on a farm 3.5 miles north of West Bend. He wanted to farm for a career and decided to take some ag mechanics classes at Iowa Lakes Community College with his buddies. After earning his farm equipment mechanics degree in 1984, he accepted a job offer from Don Haverman at West Bend Elevator Company. Although Jeff didn’t have the opportunity to farm, he’s glad his work has kept him close to agriculture for 30 years. “I like the variety of work,” said Jeff, who works on everything from lawn mowers to semitrucks to TerraGators®.

2. Playing it cool pays off for Jeff. Mechanics have a lot to manage, from preventative maintenance to troubleshooting equipment breakdowns in the field. When tensions run high, Jeff’s calm, patient demeanor is a lifesaver. “Some days my phone is ringing every 10 minutes with someone needing something now,” Jeff said. “While it can get stressful, you just have to remember that you can only do one thing at a time.” He also thinks of the advice one of his college instructors repeated often. “The best tool you’ve got is observation,” Jeff said. “I also figure that if man put it together, man should be able to fix it.”

3. Jeff is a sports fan. Jeff played football, basketball, and baseball at West Bend-Mallard High School, in addition to running track. This athletic ability was passed on to his son, Mitch. “The first time I threw Mitch a baseball, he nailed it,” said Jeff, recalling a time when Mitch was about two or three years old. As Mitch grew, he also fine-tuned his football skills and became the quarterback and punter for West Bend-Mallard High School. Jeff helped Mitch practice his punting skills, working first on distance, then on height, first in the street in front of their house, then at the parking a lot by the Methodist Church, and finally at the high school football field. By the time Mitch graduated from high school in 2012, he had been named an all-state punter for three years in a row. He continued his football career at Iowa Central Community College, where he kicked an impressive 82-yard punt and became the number one junior college punter in the nation. “He was also named an All-American for two years in a row,” noted Jeff, who added that Mitch’s punts often clock a hang time of 4.5 seconds.

Mitch Bonnstetter will punt for Ohio University this fall. Tim Dahlhauser photo

Mitch Bonnstetter will punt for Ohio University this fall. Tim Dahlhauser photo

4. There’s a good reason why Jeff cheers for Ohio University. Mitch’s talent caught the attention of Division I coaches, including Frank Solich, who offered Mitch a full-ride athletic scholarship to Ohio University in Athens, OH. Mitch accepted and transferred to Ohio University in December of 2013. As #23 for the Bobcats, Mitch plays in the Mid-American Conference. He’s also majoring in sports management/psychology. “It was fun to go to Ohio in mid-April and watch his spring game,” said Jeff, who noted that Mitch is the first West Bend-Mallard graduate to play Division I football.

5. Jeff carries on MaxYield’s All Star tradition. Jeff doesn’t have much time off during the hectic spring agronomy season, when he and the MaxYield team put in however many hours it takes to get the job done. He credits his team members, including Tim Fuoss, John Keller, Bill Fuchsen, and Travis Pederson, for keeping everything running smoothly. “We’re not just mechanics,” added Jeff, who was a member of one of MaxYield’s first All Star teams. “We’re also tender drivers and applicator operators who pitch in where we’re needed.”

Jeff and his team are excited about MaxYield’s new 19,200-square-foot service facility that’s being built in West Bend to house the maintenance shop, service station, and tire inventory. “It will help us work more efficiently and keep things running,” said Jeff, who noted that the new shop will have two lifts, including one for heavy equipment, and four bays to accommodate routine work and emergency jobs. This focus on the future also energizes Jeff, who has appreciated the opportunity to grow his career at MaxYield. “I’m glad I can live and work in my hometown and help people out.”

Editor’s note: Jeff and his wife, Pam, who owns the home décor shop Pam’s Final Touch in West Bend, have three children, Tiffany, 25, who is getting married soon; Mitch, 21, a sophomore at Ohio University; and Kylee, 13, who will be in seventh grade this fall at West Bend-Mallard. In his free time, Jeff enjoys camping, fishing, hunting, and golfing.

Energy When You Need It: Secure Heat Offers Peace of Mind

20140513_maxyield_109 compHave you ever ordered anything online and needed it the next day? Do you get any discounts on shipping? Probably not. That’s why we’re pleased to offer a secure heat program to provide the liquid propane (LP) you need, when you need it, at a competitive price.

“Our routed LP program equals secure heat,” said Chad Besch, MaxYield Cooperative’s
energy team leader. “It also means you’ll have one less thing to worry about.”

Instead of having to watch your LP tank and call in when the level gets low, MaxYield’s computer analyzes your last three fuel deliveries and looks at degree days to determine how much LP your house uses. While we can’t guarantee that you’ll never run out of LP due to extenuating circumstances, you gain other benefits.

If you’re on secure heat, we can assure you that if there’s an issue, we’ll take care of it right away, at no cost to you. For residential customers, you’re also eligible for a 10-cent-per-gallon discount when you sign up for our secure heat program.

In addition, if propane prices are poised to spike like they did in early 2014, we’ll keep an eye out for our secure heat clients. “We didn’t top off the tanks of our secure heat customers this winter when LP prices were soaring,” Besch said. “We made sure they had enough LP to get by, and by the next time we filled their tank, the price had dropped significantly.”

In addition, MaxYield offers budget billing for anyone to make payments easier. “We’ll estimate your usage for the year, establish the contract price, and spread those payments across 10 months, at no additional charge,” Besch said.

For information on MaxYield’s budget billing or secure heat programs, contact MaxYield’s Energy Central desk at 866-711-7282. ■

Are Nematodes Robbing Your Soybean Yields?

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In once local field, MaxYield’s Dan Stokes could observe nematodes on soybean roots that were 2. 5 to 3 feet deep, all without using a magnifying glass.

If it seems like your soybean yields are at a standstill, you’re not alone. The biggest culprit might be something so tiny that it’s easy to overlook—soybean cyst nematode (SCN).

“While we’ve got more elite seed genetics and better seed treatments today than we did in 2005, local field data shows we’re still no better yield-wise, on average, than we were then,” said Dan Stokes, a MaxYield seed solutions specialist. “I think we’ve got more challenges with nematodes than people realize.”

SCN has been called the number one pest of soybeans in Iowa. Nematodes are among the most populous creatures on the planet, so it’s no surprise they reside in nearly every field. Nematodes also reproduce quickly, creating several generations in season.

SCN tends to show up in lighter, sandier parts of the field and in high pH areas, Stokes said. SCN can be tricky to detect, however, because its symptoms often mimic iron deficiency chlorosis.

The Society of Nematologists estimates that plant-parasitic nematodes cause more than $3 billion worth of crop losses annually. “We’ve seen a gradual increase of SCN over several years, and the pests are difficult to manage,” said Loren Giesler, a University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension plant pathologist.

Pests can stay in the soil for 10 years

SCN feeds on roots, robbing the soybean plant of nutrients. SCN also causes root wounds that allow diseases and fungi to invade the plant. The severity of crop damage and yield loss depends on crop rotation and the soybean variety planted.

University researchers note that several recent changes in farming practices are influencing greater SCN populations in many fields. First, growers used to use some insecticides that also had activity on nematodes, however, we no longer use these.

Corn-on-corn or bean-on-bean rotations are another big influence. “Nematodes can stay in the soil for 10 years or more when soybeans aren’t in the rotation,” Stokes said.

Sampling for nematodes is difficult, Stokes added. Nematodes go deep in the soil when conditions are hot and dry, making it tough for traditional sampling methods to reveal the pests. “Hotter soils in the late summer are also why we had fewer SCN problems in 2013,” Stokes said.

Is it time for new seed treatments?

If you’re counting on nematode-resistant soybean varieties to prevent all SCN damage, you might be disappointed, Giesler said. He sees a stronger future for nematicides on soybeans.

So does Stokes, who recommends some of the new seed treatments on the market. “We’re planting earlier, so the beans need to be treated to protect against nematodes.”

Stokes recommends the Poncho®/VOTiVO® seed treatment, which uses a biological mode of action to protect soybean plants from pests during critical early development stages. Poncho/VOTiVO contains a unique bacteria strain that lives and grows with young soybean roots, creating a living barrier that prevents nematodes from causing damage.

“When nematodes come looking for something to eat, there are no signs of the roots available, because the roots are surrounded by Poncho/VOTiVO,” Stokes said. “As the bacteria multiply, you also get more protection as the season goes along.”

Trials have shown a 2- to 8-bushel yield advantage with Poncho/VOTiVO, depending on soil conditions and other factors. “It’s about a $4- to-$5-per-acre investment that can deliver a 2:1 return,” Stokes noted. “Take a hard look at this option when you’re getting your beans treated, and at least consider treating a portion with Poncho/VOTiVO.”

In 2014, MaxYield will conduct more split treatments at local test plots to study Poncho/VOTiVO and other seed treatments. The goal? Find practical, proven solutions to address the nematode challenge and push soybean yields beyond 50- to 55-bushels per acre into the 70+ bushel range.

“We’ve got the genetic potential to make this happen,” Stokes said. “When we stop nematodes right from the start, we can get serious about growing higher soybean yields.”

For more information on controlling SCN, contact your MaxYield seed solutions specialist or MaxYield agronomy specialist.