August 17, 2019

MaxYield Board of Directors approve grain storage expansion in Britt, Belmond

MaxYield’s board of directors recently approved the construction of two grain storage bins, one in Britt and one in Belmond. The new bins will each hold 725,000 bushels of grain, similar to the bins shown in this photo.

The MaxYield Cooperative board of directors has approved the construction of additional grain storage at two MaxYield locations. The grain bins, which are set to be completed during the cooperative’s fiscal year 2020, will each be 105’ in diameter and will each hold 725,000 bushels of grain. One of the new grain bins will be constructed at MaxYield’s location in Britt and one will be constructed at the cooperative’s location in Belmond.

Site preparation for the expansion at each location is expected to be completed this fall, with an expected project completion in time for harvest in the fall of 2020. Keith Heim, CEO, is excited about the approved expansion. “I am pleased to announce that the MaxYield Board of Directors approved moving forward with the addition of two grain bin storage projects. Our strong balance sheet, arguably the best in our history, allows us to continue our commitment to upgrading our facilities and equipment at MaxYield Cooperative.”

These projects are in the early stages of development at this time. More details will be shared as they become available by the cooperative.


MaxYield Cooperative is a local, diversified farmer-owned cooperative serving members and clients in Iowa, and southern Minnesota. Founded in 1915, MaxYield Cooperative is headquartered in West Bend, Iowa. More information about the cooperative can be found online at and

MaxYield Partners with Corteva Agriscience to support Night of 1000 Stars

Ricky Thornton Jr. championed the night in the IMCA Modified feature.

MaxYield Cooperative was proud to partner with Corteva Agriscience for the annual Night of 1000 Stars race at the Hancock County Speedway in Britt, Iowa on August 8th, 2019. The pair sponsored the first 100 IMCA Sport Mod/Modified driver’s pit passes for the night. MaxYield Cooperative appreciates all 129 drivers who made the trek to Britt and put on a show for what looked to be a near sell-out crowd!

Congratulations to Ricky Thornton Jr., who took home the $3500 IMCA Modified win, and all the feature winners from the night! The full press release from IMCA can be read by clicking here.

10 things I wish I would have known before accepting a MaxYield internship

By Emily Campbell

Accepting a new job, an internship, or a big promotion are important events in your life and they bring a lot of feelings with them. When I accepted the Client Relations and Communications internship at MaxYield Cooperative last October, I was incredibly excited but also a little bit anxious. I couldn’t help but thinking “Is this experience really going to be everything I’m expecting?” I knew my experience at MaxYield would be my last internship before graduation, so I really wanted every detail of it to be just the right fit for me.

Now that I’m here, I have nothing to worry about! My experience at MaxYield Cooperative has been a dream from day one. To help put the fears of the next potential class of MaxYield interns to rest, here are 10 things I wish I would have known before accepting a MaxYield internship:


  1. You will not be left to ‘fend for yourself’ on the first day. When I accepted this internship, I was worried that I would just show up on the first day and be expected to ‘figure it out.’ Fortunately, that’s not how it was at all. This first week was filled with comprehensive trainings, onboarding sessions, and time with our mentors to dive into goal and expectations for the summer. It is during these first few days that you build a foundation and roadmap for your summer, which will ultimately lead to a more successful internship.


  1. Your mentor truly cares about you and will do everything they can to make your experience a great one. I have heard horror stories from college classmates interning at other organizations who have been assigned mentors, only to find that those ‘mentors’ would rather be doing anything else than helping an intern. At MaxYield, each intern is assigned at least one mentor who is passionate about facilitating learning experiences over the summer and making sure their intern has a fulfilling experience! My mentor, Chad Meyer, even reached out to me before the internship started to work together to set goals and make plans. This helped me feel more comfortable and efficient in my first few days of the internship.


  1. There is no ‘office drama’. I think we all have this misconception that the larger a workplace is, the more drama it holds. And while that may be true for some organizations, that is not the case at MaxYield Cooperative. I had never worked for a midsize company like MaxYield, so I expected a sudden surge of ‘he said, she said’. I am proud to say that after working for MaxYield Cooperative, I still have no experience with office drama. It sounds a little cliché, but everyone at MaxYield is truly here to help each other and the company succeed. People are happy for each other, and it’s a really welcoming environment.


  1. You will be given all the tools you need to succeed, and then some. MaxYield is committed to providing their interns with all the things they need to have a great summer. Whether it be a company vehicle, laptop or iPad, desktop computer, a generous company uniform allowance, housing reimbursement, or anything in-between, MaxYield Cooperative will give you all the tools you need to do your job and do it well. They also tend to upgrade from year to year so interns get to work with some of the latest equipment. When I arrived in May, there was a brand new video camera for me to break in this summer!


  1. The people in the area are extremely friendly. I knew the team members at MaxYield would be friendly, as I had already met some of them and heard good things about the team prior to starting my internship. However, what I didn’t know was how MaxYield’s clients would treat interns. As it turns out, the people in the greater MaxYield Cooperative trade area accept interns with open arms! One of my best memories is traveling to a tractor owner’s house to interview him for our annual calendar. While there, we had coffee, I met the family cat, and got to hear about his trip on a veteran’s honor flight. Every person I have interacted with, client or not, has been very friendly and genuinely interested in me and my experience.


  1. There are a lot of cool things to do and places to eat here. Before arriving for the summer, I had heard a rumor that Pizza Ranch was like the only restaurant in Northwest Iowa. Birthday dinner? Pizza Ranch. Sunday brunch? Pizza Ranch. Wedding rehearsal? Pizza Ranch- you get the point. Now I don’t want to offend anyone but personally, I’m not a huge fan of ‘The Ranch’, so you can imagine my horror when I thought that every working lunch out would be around a pan of Cactus Bread. To my surprise, there are actually a lot of incredible local places to shop, dine, and do in the MaxYield area! Future interns, I highly recommend The Wagon Wheel and Miller’s to grab a bite, and Feed Mill Coffee Co. or Java 18 for a cup of coffee. In terms of things to do, Crown Salon is my go-to for a pedicure, and both the Kossuth County Speedway and Hancock County Speedway play host to great weekly racing action. Getting to experience the local business offerings of this part of the state has been one of the best things about my summer. Northwest Iowa is a pretty cool place!


  1. Even though MaxYield has many locations and over 200 team members, it still feels pretty small. “How will I ever learn anyone’s name? Will they even know who I am?” I have only ever worked for small companies or family businesses, so working for a midsize company like MaxYield was a new ballgame for me. I don’t know what kind of telepathy the full-time team members have, but it literally seemed like everyone knew me before I even introduced myself! This made me feel welcome at MaxYield from the minute I stepped into the office. It’s also been surprisingly easy to remember everyone’s name, face, job title, and even location. This has made corresponding with others in the company especially easy!


  1. We get to have fun at work, too! My biggest worry leading up to this summer was that it would be all work and no play. Even though I have a great work ethic and enjoy working, I still wanted to have a little downtime here and there. MaxYield Cooperative makes sure to integrate some fun into your summer, too! This “fun” comes in all shapes and sizes, whether it’s your mentor’s crazy stories on a long road trip, an office birthday party planned by our receptionist Deb, or an intern outing to a waterpark. Having fun and having a great summer learning experience go hand-in-hand at MaxYield, and your summer here will be an enjoyable one, for sure!


  1. MaxYield internships are well-rounded. At MaxYield you’re not just focused on getting as much work done as possible. There is emphasis on skill building, networking, professional and personal development, goal setting, industry knowledge, and fun (see #8), too. This is what makes your time at MaxYield more than just a summer job. Whether that’s taking you on an industry tour to the AgCo manufacturing facility or letting you ride along with a freelance photographer, there are a slew of ‘other’ experiences waiting for you at MaxYield!


  1. This experience is truly tailored to your needs. While some parts of the internship are standard from year to year, much of it is left up to you. What parts of the industry would you like exposure to? What skills do you want to build? Where do your career goals lie? Your mentor will work will you to find projects and experiences that fit your needs. I mentioned to Chad that I was interested in recruiting. Recruitment isn’t typically the forefront of the communications and client relations internship, but he was willing to work some related experiences in. Now, I have been involved in all parts of the intern recruiting process, and have even taken on a capstone project on recruitment tactics!


All-in-all, my MaxYield experience has been more than I expected. And, we have a spot for you in 2020! Contact Chad Meyer, Client Relations/Communications Director at cmeyer@maxyieldcooperative or check out the internship page on our website for more information on our internship program.

MaxYield Algona – No Grain Aug. 7-9

MaxYield’s Algona location will be unable to accept grain Wednesday, August 7 through Friday, August 9 for electrical repairs at the grain elevator. Thank you in advance for your understanding!

Paving His Own Way: Alex Londerville’s Story

If you’d asked Alex Londerville, our newest grain origination trainee, four years ago what he’d be doing after college, the agriculture industry would not have been a topic of conversation. Originally from Swisher, Iowa, Alex spent two years at the University of Iowa’s business college before transferring into ag business at Iowa State University. “I knew I had a love for business and that’s what took me to [the University of] Iowa first. I realized through helping some of my buddies out on their farms that I really had a passion for agriculture, so I decided to combine the two and transferred to Iowa State for an ag business degree.”

Iowa State was also what brought him to MaxYield Cooperative. “I found the [grain origination trainee] position on CyHire (Iowa State’s job board). I was looking for full time openings in grain origination or merchandising, and this was one of the positions I applied for. I really enjoyed meeting everyone [from MaxYield], and [the way I was treated] in the interview was what really sealed the deal.”

A common theme among interns and new hires is their love for MaxYield’s clients and getting the chance to work with them. Alex is no different. “The best part of this position is dealing with clients on a daily basis- whether it’s over the phone or if they stop at the location, or if I go out in the country by myself for the day, it’s nice to just talk to them and get to know them. That’s what I like most about it.”

Mick Hoover, risk management team leader, serves as Alex’s mentor. Mick’s mentorship is something Alex considers an asset when beginning his career at MaxYield. “I’ve benefitted from having Mick as a mentor just by seeing his love and his passion for grain origination. By talking to him I know how much he loves those things, even if he doesn’t do it on a daily basis anymore. Just seeing his drive gives me drive, too, and a desire to be successful at it.”

‘Fantastic’ rolled off the tongue as a way to encompass his experience at MaxYield so far. “I really like what I do. I’ve only been doing it for a couple of months now but I really enjoy the company and my job, and I’m excited about the future… Once I [build my] skills in grain origination and grow my relationship with clients, I look forward to growing within MaxYield; taking on more responsibilities, becoming more of an asset to the company and to our clients, and to being successful.”

The team members at MaxYield want to see Alex become successful, too, by sharing their knowledge and support, which is one reason he would recommend working at the cooperative to anyone with an interest. “Without a doubt go for it… The wealth of knowledge and the guidance that you get working here is second to none. Just go in with open arms, open eyes, and open ears and embrace it.”

Interning at MaxYield Through the Eyes of Megan Brown

By Megan Brown

It was late October when I came to MaxYield Cooperative’s Corporate Office for an interview to be this year’s Grain Accounting and Finance intern. Shortly after that interview, I was offered the job which I accepted. I was beyond excited to be coming back home to work for a great company.

Fast forward to May 20th, which was my first day at MaxYield. My first two days here were used to inform us about safety and the company’s history and policies. I was surprised by my first two days here at MaxYield because I could already tell that everyone here was very welcoming, and that they all truly loved their jobs and wanted the interns to succeed.

On the third day, after we had finished all of our onboarding and safety training, it was time to get settled in at my desk and get to work. One of the first things Rick Abrahamson, one of my mentors, showed me was how to update and cancelled Price Later Contracts and Warehouse Receipts. This is something that I now do every morning to make sure that we stay compliant with state regulations. After that I learned how to enter outbound grain settlements into the computer system. I really enjoy entering these settlements, which is good because I usually do about 2 or 3 a day! I have also had the opportunity to work on various projects with different team members, as well as travel to some of the MaxYield locations.

One of the larger projects that I have had the opportunity to work on would be Connection Central, our online client account system. During this project I have had the privilege to work with Kayla Meyer, as well as meet with several MaxYield clients and talk to them about Connection Central. I have found this project to be very rewarding because I am able to see the change that Connection Central is making in the clients’ lives, and how it is making it easier for them to do their business.

Traveling to different MaxYield locations is another great opportunity I have had within my internship so far. I have had the chance to visit 4 different locations and learn from the leaders at those locations about what they do and what their location has to offer. This has been one of my favorite parts of my internship! I have found it very interesting to see all of the difference between the locations and have also learned a lot of different skills from the great people I have met.

It is crazy to think that I’m am nearly done with my internship here at MaxYield. Time has flown by and I am super excited to finish out the last few days of my internship and continuing to learn from the great team members here at MaxYield.

For more information on MaxYield’s internship program, including communications, grain accounting/finance, soil sampling/crop scouting, and agronomy sales, check out Applications for 2020 internship positions will be posted later this summer!

Standard Nutrition & MaxYield Announce Joint Venture

MaxYield is excited to announce that we have formed a joint venture with Standard Nutrition at their feed mill in Waverly, IA, which is the former Schneider Milling location. The following letter was sent recently to clients of the Waverly feed mill. More details will be forthcoming in the near future. Do not hesitate to contact Ben Buie or Mick Hoover at MaxYield at 515-200-5115 with questions.

Standard Nutrition at Waverly, IA and MaxYield Cooperative Announce
Grain Purchasing Joint Venture

August 1, 2019

Dear Valued Standard Nutrition Grain Client:

We are excited to announce that MaxYield Cooperative and Standard Nutrition have entered into a grain purchasing and risk management joint venture. Effective August 1, 2019, MaxYield Cooperative will be handling the grain purchasing, grain accounting and risk management at Standard Nutrition’s feed mill, the former Schneider Milling location east of Waverly, IA (3601 E. Bremer Ave).

Since 1995, MaxYield has provided grain procurement and risk management services to feed mills and grain end-users in the Midwest, including Kerber Milling/Standard Nutrition in Emmetsburg, IA and the Hawkeye Pride poultry feed mill near Corwith, IA.

Headquartered in West Bend, Iowa, MaxYield Cooperative is a local farmer-owned, diversified cooperative founded in 1915. We have 24 locations and 3 Cenex convenience stores that serve members and clients in Iowa and southern Minnesota. We invite you to learn more about our cooperative at and Cash grain bids for the Waverly feed mill are posted to

We look forward to providing your grain marketing solutions in Waverly, including cash grain marketing options, firm offer programs, off-farm trucking solutions and innovative grain contracts and risk management strategies.

It is also important to note that ALL existing grain contracts and financial terms at Standard Nutrition in Waverly will be honored by MaxYield Cooperative after August 1.

Thank you for your past grain business with the Waverly feed mill. We are excited to get to know you and provide solutions that benefit your farming operation.

More information about this transition and the solutions we offer will be provided soon. In the meantime, do not hesitate to contact Ben Buie, grain team leader at 515-200-5115, or Mick Hoover, risk management team leader at 515-200-5115, for more information about MaxYield, our bids, grain contracts and risk management programs.


Ben Buie
Grain Team Leader

Tricia Reichert : Getting something ‘extra’ out of her summer with an externship experience

When you think of summer team members at MaxYield Cooperative, college interns may be the first thing that comes to mind, but employment learning experiences aren’t just for students. Tricia Reichert, a science teacher at Emmetsburg High School, is finding her own way to learn in the summer and is participating in the Iowa STEM Teacher Externships Program. According to the Governor’s Stem Advisory Council, the Iowa STEM Teacher Externships Program features “full-time, six-week temporary summer positions in local businesses and agencies for secondary teachers of mathematics, science and/or technology… During the summer, educators work side-by-side with knowledgeable and skilled industry employees who help bring the classroom curriculum to life. Teacher Externships provide educators with the exposure to answer questions about real-world application, prepare students for careers they may have in the future, and improve educational experiences.” Tricia selected MaxYield Cooperative as her workplace, serving as the company’s first extern.

As a part of her extern experience, Tricia has written a blog each week about what she is doing, seeing, and learning at MaxYield. Here are excerpts from each of her blogs:

Week 1: “My biggest takeaway of the week has been that education and “the real” workplace share many commonalities. Whereas I am looking for student engagement and academic growth in the classroom, MaxYield is currently very focused on Agronomy interns who are willing to learn to be productive members of the MaxYield team who then ultimately remain with the company. As a classroom teacher, I have seen a shift in the work ethic of my students and it seems this is a trend has also been felt in the work place as well. One of my main tasks this summer is to brainstorm how MaxYield can better recruit and retain the young interns. How can I as a classroom teacher better prepare students of today to be well-qualified MaxYield team members of tomorrow?”

Week 2: “My second week at MaxYield Cooperative has certainly continued to offer a variety of experiences each day. I spent time in the Britt area with team member, Rodney Legleiter who is a SciMax Solutions Specialist. He showed me the process of soil and tissue sampling and mailing them to their respective labs for analysis. I was amazed at his ability to juggle a visiting extern, agronomy interns, changing weather and field conditions, sampling routes, and unexpected client visits and phone calls. The vast number of variables that he must take into account was almost overwhelming. It was clear by the way Rodney paused everything to respond with 110% focus on the client’s questions and requests that he epitomizes the MaxYield philosophy of “solutions provider.” He also shared with me some challenges he has had with this year’s young agronomy interns. It seems some are having a hard time reporting to work on time, completing duties as assigned in an efficient manner and even complaining to their supervisor. This led to a meeting where we examined the strengths of the current MaxYield Cooperative Internship Program and brainstormed about how to improve it in light of the evolving intern work ethic. I very much appreciated being asked to participate in this process and felt I contributed to the discussion.”

Week 3: “Weed 3 brought the realities of the need for ongoing education. I attended… meetings this week that exemplified MaxYield’s commitment to ongoing employee education. The need for continued learning very much stood out to me this week. So many of our students believe that once they graduate from school they will never need to learn anything. We must realign their thinking!.. The first one was presented by Patti Guenther, Learning & Development Leader, on the topic of “Crucial Conversations: Pairing Impact with Intention.” At her request, I had the opportunity a couple of weeks ago of working with Patti on this presentation. She was not trained as a teacher, but often presents in her role here at MaxYield Cooperative and was receptive to feedback. It was fun to share some teaching strategies with her and then to see that she actually incorporated them into her presentation! During this two-hour training session, the Team Leaders were taught how to more effectively communicate with their employees.”

Week 4: “A few events really struck me this week. The first one is the “all hands on deck” experience as this Emmetsburg MaxYield Cooperative Location prepares to host a Client Appreciation BBQ. It has been a fun team-building experience to see everyone pitching in and doing things that are not their normal “duties as assigned”. I volunteered to mow the location’s green spaces and it was a long, hot, sticky, FUN day. It was good to see the results of my hard work at the end of the day. We don’t always get that satisfaction as teachers. Another take away was the realization of how important phone apps are in the workplace. To date I’ve seen multiple task specific phone apps being used in agronomy. There is a tremendous opportunity for more apps to be developed for use in the workplace as well. We as teachers need to stop taking smart phones away from students and instead give them meaningful tasks to use them in the classroom.”

Week 5: “As a teacher, I can come up with numerous ways I would like to see business get involved in the classroom, but there are obstacles. When I have several sections of Biology, for example it is very difficult to ask a guest speaker to give up an entire day to speak to all of the classes spread throughout the day. When class periods are only 42 minutes, it becomes a logistical nightmare to take the students on a meaningful field trip even if it is nearby. I think the use of Project Based Learning activities that have authentic real world connections will be the best solution. Chris Warren and Shelby Wagner both of MaxYield Cooperative have helped to provide me with actual field soil maps and other resources I have used to create my Project Based Learning activity for the classroom. Perhaps we could use skype or some other technology for a quick and easy “virtual field trip” to the farmer’s field.”

Through her experience, Tricia has provided us with plentiful, useful feedback on how to better connect MaxYield to the classroom. We appreciate all of Tricia’s hard work and insights throughout her time with us and thank her for a great summer!

MaxYield Cooperative interns begin to wrap up their summer with final presentations

From left to right: (Front) Megan Brown, Emily Campbell, (Back) CEO Keith Heim, Logan Besch, Hunter Gelhaus, Nick Hunt.

On Thursday, July 27th the 2019 MaxYield Cooperative intern class gave their final presentations to the senior leadership team. Each intern gave a 10-15 minute spoken presentation sharing information about the projects they worked on, what they learned, and what suggestions they have for making next year’s internships even better. Following each presentations interns were also asked questions about themselves and their experience at MaxYield. The interns shared positive feedback with the senior team, and enjoying the people they work with was a common theme throughout. MaxYield’s first extern, Tricia Reichert, also gave her final presentation at the meeting. Watch for a separate blog post highlighting her experience soon!

As our interns wrap up their last few weeks with us, MaxYield Cooperative would like to each of them for a great summer. We have learned a great deal through working with them, and we look forward to seeing where their futures take them!


2019 MaxYield Cooperative Interns

Logan Besch – Soil Sampling/Crop Scouting

Megan Brown – Corporate Grain Accounting/Finance

Emily Campbell – Client Relations/Communications

Hunter Gelhaus – Seed/Agronomy Sales

Nick Hunt – Soil Sampling/Crop Scouting


For more information on MaxYield’s internship program, including communications, grain accounting/finance, soil sampling/crop scouting, and agronomy sales, check out Applications for 2020 internship positions will be posted later this summer!

“This is my dream job.” | Colby Kraninger’s Agronomy Specialist Trainee Story

Having a job and having a career you love are two very different things- Colby Kraninger, an agronomy specialist trainee at MaxYield Cooperative, prefers the latter. That’s why, after working for MaxYield Cooperative part-time and as an intern, he returned for a full-time opportunity in the agronomy department. A 2014 Okoboji High School and 2019 Iowa State University graduate, the Milford-native built his post-secondary plans around the goal of working for MaxYield Cooperative. “[While at North Iowa Area Community College] I worked in grain operations [for MaxYield Cooperative in Fostoria]- I wanted to be a grain originator at the time. I eventually realized I didn’t want to pursue a career in [grain]. When I graduated from NIACC, I realized I wanted to become an agronomist after working for MaxYield so I decided to continue my education at Iowa State.” In addition to working at the Fostoria location, he has worked in the dry fertilizer facility at Emmetsburg, agronomy operations in Dickens, soil sampling and crop scouting with SciMax, and most recently as an agronomy sales intern in the summer of 2018.

Coming off his time at NIACC and MaxYield, the agronomy major at Iowa State just felt like the right fit to Colby. “I like talking to people, and I feel like growers can trust me. Since I never had the opportunity to farm myself, I want to contribute to the industry by helping others improve their operations. I’ve just dreamed of being around agriculture my entire life.”

Since starting in his new trainee role, Colby has taken on a variety of responsibilities, from delivering seed to making crop protection recommendations and everything in between. His favorite part of his position, however, is the client interaction. “It’s the number one part of my job- I enjoy being able to use what I learned at Iowa State to help people.”

To help facilitate the transition from college to the full-time workforce, all trainees at MaxYield Cooperative are given a mentor to provide guidance and knowledge. Colby has two. “My mentors are Justin Zwiefel (Agronomy Specialist, Mallard) and Tom Evans (Agronomy Specialist, Superior). If it wasn’t for them I would be directionless in terms of my career. They help keep me on track and show me how to use our agronomy software, how to provide a good [crop protection and nutrient] recommendation, and other important skills.”

Other team members have also helped make Colby’s time at MaxYield great. He especially enjoys his co-workers at the Mallard Location. “The people I work with are really nice- there were two weeks in a row where we just took turns buying each other lunch. We joke around and like to have a good time, and everyone treats each other very well.”

It’s a pretty incredible feeling to wake up and be excited for what lies ahead. For Colby, that happens every day. “This career is pretty exciting. Everyday there’s something to look forward to. In the future, I hope to provide trust to [my] future clients and be equipped to provide them with solutions. Service is key.”

There’s a lot of agronomy sales opportunities out there for new college graduates, but Colby can recommend the MaxYield agronomy specialist trainee role with confidence. “If someone was looking for an agronomy position at MaxYield, I would highly recommend [the agronomy specialist trainee role]. The mentor program is great, and there’s a lot of opportunity to learn and pick up on things while you are starting you’re career which is really comforting. Your questions are always answered by team members in a polite way, and if you have a client question you can’t answer, there’s plenty of resources within the company that are only a phone call away.”

Can you see yourself doing what Colby does? We are hiring an additional Agronomy Specialist Trainee! Seeking a December 2019 graduate from a 2-year or 4-year school with a degree in agronomy, ag business, ag studies, or a related area. For more information or to apply click here or contact Chad Meyer at *Iowa State students: Find us on CyHire!*