Co-op News > From the Manager's Desk

From the Manager's Desk

Oct 01, 2021

Corn at harvest

October Update

With harvest well underway in many parts of our trade area, our employee team is gearing up and ready to serve our members during the next two seasonal rushes your cooperative experiences each year—grain rush and propane heating season. Our grain plants located in Mineral Point, Mazomanie, Richland Center, Westby, and now Hazel Green, are anxiously awaiting this year’s crop. With the near-term weather forecast calling for warm temps and very little chance for rain into the first few weeks of October, this year’s harvest could be setting up like 2020. An early and dry harvest not only saves on the cost to store this year’s grain, but also helps get a jump on the 2022 growing season. Soil sampling, fertilizer applications, and more that we can get done in the fall will help free up valuable resources for an unpredictable spring planting season.  

Now that summer is officially behind us, it’s time for our propane staff to put away their paint brushes and toolboxes and get their delivery trucks ready to roll. For those of you that call in your propane orders, please consider getting your tank filled well ahead of winter. I’m sure Tim will touch on this more, but everything we have seen since mid-summer is setting up for very tight propane supplies heading into the winter. Please don’t wait for the first cold snap to remember you rely on propane to heat your home. For those on our keep fill programs, thank you for allowing us to work your deliveries into our routes. Thank you all for choosing Premier to be your propane provider and making us one of the top 25 propane retailers in the United States. 

By the time you receive this we will have closed out Premier’s 128th fiscal year, more than any other farm and consumer supply cooperative in the United States. While our year-end results will not be completed until after our mid-November audit, I feel comfortable sharing that we look forward to reporting on another great year for your cooperative. Total sales will be up along with solid bottom line performance. Thank you all for the support that helped make this happen. At Premier, we have never looked at sales or profit at your company as the top metrics whether we had a successful year. More important than those two is determining whether we exceeded our member’s expectations throughout the year, provided a safe and positive work environment for our staff, continued to learn from our mistakes, challenged each other to find improved ways to operate your company, and added value and positive returns to our customers. While these are often hard to measure, the positive feedback from our members and the resulting growth we have generated over the past many years are hopefully a sign that we continue to head in the right direction. We also recognize that the changes we sometimes need to make to improve our services, decrease hassle, improve efficiencies/costs, and/or increase value to our members will inevitably have a negative impact on a few. We will continue to do our best to minimize these while remaining vigilant in our quest for improvement. Thank you for continuing to allow us the opportunity to provide you with the products and services you need. 

A couple of months ago I reported on a few projects that were in the early stages at your cooperative. I’m happy to report that our Lancaster agronomy facility has now broken ground on their new 7,500+ ton dry fertilizer warehouse. If winter cooperates and equipment/materials arrive as planned, we hope to be filling the warehouse by summer 2022. A little further south at the newly acquired agronomy and grain facility in Hazel Green, WI, our staff has been busy bringing the equipment and buildings on-line and ready for operations. As I write this on September 27th, we have been receiving grain and have begun to fill the fertilizer warehouse. Our entire team is excited for the opportunity to serve our existing and new members as these new assets are put into service.   

Whether you are out enjoying the weather on our beautiful country roads this fall, or helping to bring in this year’s crop, please remember to slow down and be safe. I hope everyone has a successful harvest and a great month.

Matt Severson

CEO


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