CHS reports fiscal year-end results, announces FY 2018 priorities

CHS Inc., the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative and a global energy, grains and foods company, today reported net income of $127.9 million for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2017, compared to net income of $424.2 million for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2016. Consolidated revenues totaled $31.9 billion for fiscal 2017, approximately a five percent increase over consolidated revenues of $30.3 billion for fiscal 2016. (more…)

The Fall Versus Spring Nitrogen Debate

nitrogen management

 
Nitrogen management is critical for growing healthy corn and farmers are sensitive to their role in helping build a more sustainable world. They are faced with the often-daunting question of whether fertilizer applications can be both profitable and sustainable. Often, the delicate balancing act begins with the decision of whether to apply N in fall or hold off until spring.

BMPs and the 4Rs

Corn producers understand there is no blanket practice. There is, however, a disciplined application approach that has long proven effective.

“When we talk about sustainability in agriculture, specifically as it relates to nutrient management, it really goes back to a foundation of best management practices (BMPs) in conjunction with the Fertilizer Institute’s 4R Program,” says Eric Scherder, field scientist, Ph.D., Dow AgroSciences, from Huxley, Iowa. “We can address some of the challenges we’re facing with nitrogen leaching and surface application runoff more effectively using this approach.”

As most growers are aware, the 4R program is a concept to help them select the right fertilizer source at the right rate, at the right time, with the right placement. While source, rate and placement are important, often the most scrutinized decision — both from an economic and sustainability standpoint — is timing. (more…)

Spring wheat now eligible for CHS Pro Advantage grain marketing contracts

CHS Pro Advantage open enrollment

CHS has announced open enrollment for spring wheat contracts through CHS Pro Advantage now through December 13, 2017. Corn and soybeans contracts are also included in this enrollment period.

CHS Pro Advantage gives growers access to industry experts at CHS Hedging/Russell Consulting Group, a wholly-owned subsidiary of CHS, to price and sell their grain. This helps to manage risk while delivering superior profits even during a tough market.

“With wheat futures falling from three-year highs seen just a few months ago and volatility following USDA’s August report, now is the time to commit bushels for professional management and marketing by our hedging experts,” said Kent Beadle, director, Russell Consulting Group.

Growers can enroll 2018 and 2019 bushels. Bushels in the one-year program will be priced between Dec. 18, 2017 and Aug. 24, 2018. Bushels in the two-year program will be priced between Dec. 18, 2017, and Aug. 23, 2019.

If you’re interested in knowing more, contact your local CHS grain team for more information or visit the CHS Pro Advantage website.

Support the industry on Global Fertilizer Day

October 13 is Global Fertilizer Day

Friday, October 13, is Global Fertilizer Day, established by the fertilizer industry as a way to help highlight the essential role fertilizers play in global food production. “About half of the world’s food production is attributable to the use of fertilizer, yet our industry commonly faces incorrect public perceptions about its importance,” says Michael Johnson, CHS Agronomy director of marketing.

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CHS announces equity management decisions


At its September meeting, the CHS Board of Directors made a number of decisions regarding equity management. The following letter from CHS Board Chairman Dan Schurr outlines these decisions:

Dear Cooperative Owner,

CHS was built on the shared values of managing our business with the highest integrity, building lasting and mutually rewarding relationships, and partnering for our collective success.

These values guide every decision your CHS Board of Directors makes on your behalf. Thanks to the dedication and hard work of those owners and employees that came before us, CHS is a cooperative that’s been built for the long haul. Your Board of Directors will ensure that tradition continues. It’s with this spirit that we share recent Board decisions around equity management.

Despite solid performance in our core businesses, a few large events have resulted in substantial fiscal 2017 financial losses in certain patronage-based businesses. These events included a loss attributed to a large producer loan and business unit asset impairments in the United States.

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Phosphate industry expects minor impact from Irma


There was a small uptick in phosphate sales ahead of Hurricane Irma’s arrival in Florida, where the bulk of North American phosphate production is located. Phosphate facilities there shut down as part of their hurricane preparedness plans.

Early reports from manufacturers are that damage at the facilities appears to be limited, but full assessment will take time. Some finished product has sustained water damage but no exact estimates have been released yet.

A major manufacturer expects to be able to resume production fairly soon, but says its third quarter production volumes could be impacted by the storm disruptions. It had stopped making price offers to either domestic or international customers until late Thursday, Sept. 14. The market has reacted and prices moved up significantly late last week.

Several import vessels of phosphates are arriving in the Gulf this month, including one vessel with CHS cargo, which arrived and was unloaded in between hurricanes. Most of that product is now making its way up the river system.

Staff at CHS terminals are busy filling orders and working with accounts to get product in position before the busy harvest season gets underway across the Cornbelt. CHS is working hard to make sure producers are being kept informed of any supply changes or concerns that might arise from the recent storm damage to production facilities or transportation infrastructure.

Local students receive CHS Foundation scholarships to pursue careers in agriculture

CHS Interns for 2017

 

The CHS Foundation, funded by charitable gifts from CHS Inc., is committed to developing the next generation of leaders in agriculture. As part of the foundation’s work centered on advancing agriculture education, it has awarded scholarships to six Colorado high school graduates. The Colorado students are among 100 students representing 23 states and Canada. Each will receive a $1,000 scholarship to cover expenses associated with their freshman year of college.

“The success of our hometown communities and rural America depends on students with a strong interest in agriculture to pursue ag-focused degrees and be the innovators to feed the world into the future,” says Nanci Lilja, president, CHS Foundation. “We’re pleased to recognize these students with scholarships and join their communities in looking forward to the important contributions they’ll make to the ag industry.”

These Montana high school students are among the 2017 CHS scholarship winners:

  • Madison Hill, St. Regis, Mont.; Montana State University – Bozeman; Agricultural Business/Animal Science
  • Reece Hutton, Turner, Mont.; Dickinson State University; Agriculture Business & Finance
  • James Jensen, Lavina, Mont.; Montana State University – Bozeman; Biology, with an Agriculture Degree
  • Kelsey Kraft, Billings, Mont.; Montana State University – Bozeman; Agricultural Education

An independent, external committee selected recipients based on their career goals, essays, extracurricular involvement, transcripts and reference letters.  In addition to high school scholarships, the CHS Foundation funds an additional 200 scholarships for students enrolled in an agricultural-related program at colleges across the country. These scholarships range from $1,000 to $2,000 and are directly administered by more than 30 CHS partner schools. Click here for more information. 

About the CHS Foundation
The CHS Foundation is funded by charitable gifts from CHS Inc., the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative and a global energy, grains and foods company. As a part of the CHS stewardship focus, the CHS Foundation supports organizations that develop future leaders for agriculture through education and leadership programs, improve agricultural safety and enhance community vitality in rural America. Learn more at chsinc.com/stewardship.

CHS aids Montana ranchers impacted by wildfires


Cattle in Hilger, Montana, in 2014

Many Montana ranchers are being affected by the Lodgepole Complex fires that have burned nearly 300,000 acres of land and displaced livestock throughout eastern Montana.

Corporate contributions
CHS has made a $100,000 contribution on behalf of eastern Montana CHS Payback feed dealers to provide CHS Payback feed at a discounted rate for livestock producers affected by the fires.

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CHS Prairie Lakes employee joins Minnesota delegation to Cuba

Cuban corn

Typical corn in Cuba is only used for local, domestic consumption.

CHS Prairie Lakes Sales Manager Erica Boyum recently joined a diverse delegation of state agricultural leaders on a trade mission to Cuba. The trip was led by Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith and included State Sen. Julie Rosen and Agricultural Commissioner Dave Frederickson.

The delegation visited Cuba at an interesting time, as President Trump revealed the administration’s new policies concerning Cuba days before they left. The group met with a variety of organizations during their time in Cuba including the Institute of Animal Sciences, the Ministry of Agriculture, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. U.S. policies towards the island, particularly those related to agriculture, were top of mind with Cuban leaders and organizations.

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