November 30, 2020

Moving Beyond a World of $7 Corn

Jim Wirtz 1By Jim Wirtz, MaxYield board member

A lot was on my mind as I harvested my crop near West Bend this fall, from memories of my son to hopes for high yields. I’m grateful this is one of the better corn crops I’ve harvested since I started farming in 1977.

Like any farmer, I’ll need those bushels, especially with the way commodity prices have dropped in the last year. This new economic climate has affected all our businesses, from the farm to the co-op. It’s also why MaxYield’s 2015 fiscal year results came as no surprise. With the days of $7 corn behind us, tighter margins have prompted farmers to cut back on fertilizer and other inputs.

As a retired ag lender, I’ve seen how these cycles in the farm economy affect the local economy. Farmers are good about stimulating the local economy when they have the money. When the rally in ag prices took off in 2008 and gained momentum through 2013-2014, farmers upgraded a lot of infrastructure. So did MaxYield, plus we strengthened our balance sheet.

Working together is success
As we go through challenging economic conditions, I’m glad MaxYield has excellent team members working on our behalf. It’s not just a job to them. They take pride in our cooperative and go above and beyond to serve.

I also appreciate my fellow MaxYield board members, who work hard to keep MaxYield on a path to success. Serving on the board gives you a whole new appreciation for MaxYield, which has grown from humble beginnings in 1915 to a multi-million-dollar business that covers a large portion of northern Iowa.

I encourage you to run for MaxYield’s board. Serving on the board is an enjoyable experience that teaches you a lot about how the cooperative works. It’s a much different perspective when you’re inside looking out, rather than outside looking in.

That’s also why communication with the board is always appreciated. If you have a question or a concern about MaxYield, contact me, or let any of the other board members know. Also, I invite you to attend MaxYield’s annual meeting at the Community Center in Britt on Dec. 17. This is a great opportunity to stay connected with your cooperative.

We appreciate your support and are glad you choose to do business with MaxYield. As we celebrate MaxYield’s 100th birthday and look to the future, I’m reminded of Henry Ford, who said, “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.”



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