February 27, 2021

Brazilian Ag professional visit area


MaxYield Coop and Brazil Guests

From left: Antonio Grasi, Elder Simm, and Olmar Lanius with the INTL FCStone tour and Rod Meyer, retired director of the Kossuth County Cattlemen and current grill volunteer, during a meal provided by MaxYield for 28 visitors from Brazil on Monday, August 20. Photo by Mindy Baker

MaxYield Cooperative hosts international ag business tour
By Mindy Baker, Editor
Algona Upper Des Moines

Call State Park was the location of a unique meeting of the minds on Monday, August 20, as MaxYield hosted a tour group of 28 members of the agriculture industry from Brazil, feeding them a traditional Iowa gourmet grill out meal of beef filets.

In early March, three members of MaxYield, including Keith Heim, CEO, traveled to Brazil, where they met with Eduardo Sanchez of INTL FC-Stone, an international consulting firm.

“Brazil has become a key player in the world market,” said Heim.

While in Brazil, Sanchez introduced Heim to many aspects of the South American agriculture market, including soybean processors and biodiesel.

“We went to an ag fair where there were more than 160,000 people in attendance,” said Heim. “Eduardo did a great job hosting the tour, and stated that he would have an interest in bringing a group to the United States.”

On Sunday, August 19, the tour landed in Minneapolis, MN, and began its whirlwind tour of Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois. The tour will finish up at the Chicago Board of Trade before heading home on Sunday, August 26.

“Our main goal is to see how the United States does business, the infrastructure, technology, and such compared to Brazil,” said Sanchez. “The tour has producers, merchandisers, crushing plant operators – a variety of ag related businesses.”

With two-inch thick steaks grilling slowly on the Kossuth County Cattleman’s massive gas grill, the tour met with members of MaxYield Cooperative.

“With the drought in the United States, many of the producers want to know how it will affect them,” said Sanchez. “My firm teaches the producers how to protect against market volatility, which is why we’ll end the tour at the Chicago Board of Trade.”

He stated the tour members were impressed with the way Minnesota and Iowa use the Mississippi River system to move grain.

“We have tons of rivers in Brazil, but not much government or private investment in shipping,” said Sanchez.

Other differences included the increased use of technology in the United States.

“Here, you will have 12 employees doing what 50 are doing in Brazil,” said Sanchez. “It is technology versus manpower. We need to learn to do things differently, more effectively, but our main goal is to see how things are done.”

It is healthy to learn from each other,” said Heim. “While the United States is still lead player in production, it means that if we have a reduction in yield (like the current one caused by the drought conditions) it has a major impact on the world market. There is currently a lot of talk in trade about the need to ration soybeans or we’ll run out before South America harvests in the spring.”

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