Apr 06, 2023

Growing up on our family farm in Wabasso, Minnesota, I developed a passion for agriculture at an early age. We raised corn, soybeans and cattle and weathered all the challenges and surprises a ‘typical’ day would bring. Like most farm kids, we learned early on to do whatever it took to keep things on the farm moving forward. 

We learned the value of a strong work ethic and how to be resilient in tough times. Admittedly, I wasn’t thinking a lot about the possibilities of where that experience may take me in business. I was busy picking rock, driving the grain cart and doing field work. 

Running a farm is a business, of course. But when you start out, you’re mostly in the business of hard work and sacrifice. That hard work and sacrifice eventually led me to the cooperative model and UFC. 

Cooperatives are unique in that they provide many opportunities for a career. There is no one path to a job or one role a person may be limited to. In the early stages of my career, I was a general laborer sweeping floors, taking inventory of stock and pulling anhydrous tanks. 

Most of the roles I filled were new to me, but the work wasn’t. Seeing the many different operations of the cooperative model up close not only helped me better understand what makes UFC and the cooperative model so valuable, it taught me invaluable lessons about the business. 

Sixteen years later as CEO, those lessons are still with me today. I was learning business before I even knew I was learning business. And those lessons help inform every decision I make today on behalf of our cooperative and its members. 

I highlight this experience not to just tell my story, but to emphasize the possibilities for anyone seeking a career in agriculture. Recruiting good people is a competitive undertaking. But one advantage we have as a cooperative is that hard work and sacrifice are rewarded here. 

My story is not very different from most of our team at UFC. As we look ahead to grow and strengthen our cooperative, we aim to grow and strengthen our workforce, too. I want to encourage anyone considering a career in agriculture to consider UFC. 

The opportunities are many. And the experiences I’ve gained from my role, I still bring back to our family farm today. More importantly, your own journey and experiences just might lead you here. 

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Apr 26, 2023
by: The UFC Agronomy Team

With our extended weather forecast showing below normal temperatures across much of UFC’s territory we know growers may not be waiting for “ideal” planting conditions. We suggest utilizing 6-24-6 starter fertilizer to help corn and soybeans deal with cooler planting temperatures.