From a CEO's Perspective

Planting update from our trade area and beyond.

 Southern MN:

Our area appears to be making good planting progress. Most will finish within the next couple of days, except for areas that require replanting because of moisture issues and planting conditions.  

Outside of our trade area:

In the SE portion of the U.S., because of moisture, there are beans that have not been planted. Conditions are unusually wet in Kansas, Nebraska, and Oklahoma. Farmers there should be complaining, but are not sure what to complain about, as typically there would be a fear of drought.

 Back home:

Emergence has been good for the most part.  We have seen some areas with crusting, but all and all its good.  The weather is conducive to us not seeing a lot of corn out of the ground, but what we are seeing is very short. There is a fair amount of disease in the beans from the cool, damp conditions. Hopefully, the forecast for warmer weather comes true and improvement on crops will be seen in a week or so.


It always amazes me how rumors start and develop over time. Most rumors start with some amount of facts or are based on a portion of a fact. Most of the time they are exaggerated, fabricated and do not resemble the original. Why does this happen? Facts are boring and made up stories are exciting; people like to embellish.  In today's world, it is easy for things to percolate and be touched by many.  My message is clear.  Ask a lot of questions. There is probably a tiny amount of truth in the rumor and the more questions you ask the closer you will get to the facts.  Where am I going with this? Lately, I have heard a few rumors about CFS going bankrupt or broke. What is the truth?  The truth is the Ag economy is not as profitable as it was the last several years. The industry is experiencing challenges. Companies are making adjustments to ensure that expenses match revenues. CFS did make some changes to reflect the margins that are in the current environment. These are good business practices. Making these types of changes will ensure that companies will not face bankruptcy or go broke. If someone asked me enough questions what would I say?  I would say, CFS has recognized the challenges and has proactively made changes to adjust our expenses and are positioned to make it through this economic downturn. We have a strong enough balance sheet to carry us through. As I close, whether it pertains to CFS, the industry, your town, your state, or your country, I challenge you to ask questions. Find out the truth about what you are reading, hearing or seeing.