Pauls Spring Ramble

May 08, 2023

Monday, May 08, 2023

Good afternoon from the Co-op!

I know, I know! It’s been so long since I blessed your in-box with my “Ramble” I won’t even try to give feeble excuses, I’ll just jump into a new Ramble for your reading enjoyment.
This past winter has been the king winter of “storms." In my 24 years of commuting to Reynolds, this winter was the worst. Lots of snow, closed roads, and bitter cold. Hopefully, we won’t have another winter like that for a long time. It’s hard to believe that Wednesday was the first 70* day in over 6 months. No wonder we are all so cranky!
It is amazing that with the amount the snow we got during the ’22-’23 winter including an early April storm, how quickly the snow disappeared. I never would have imagined that we would be in the field in early May.
We had a solid week of fieldwork. Our estimate is 50% of the sugarbeets are in the ground in our area. Wheat is 20-25% seeded and Corn is 5%. A good start to our 2023 season considering we have been in the field less than a week. Our area received about 1’ of rain Saturday-Sunday and the forecast is for light showers all week. Let’s hope the weather clears and we can resume “planting ‘23”.
Spring wheat planting in North Dakota is 10% complete, compared to 27% last year. Corn planting is 1% complete which compares to 0% last year. 0% of the soybeans are seeded.
Nationally, corn is 49% planted vs. Last week’s 26% & the 5-year average of 42%. 35% of the soybeans are in the ground, which compares to 19% last year & the 5-year average of 21%. Spring Wheat planting is 24% complete compared to 26% last year & 36% average. Winter wheat condition @ 29% good/excellent (28% last week) and 29% last year.
I can’t stress enough the importance of treating all your seed. With the lateness of the season & planting into cold soil, you need for the seed to remain strong & vigorous!
Barge traffic on the Upper Mississippi is shut down for a period of possibly weeks. All locks and dams above Lock 17 will be closed for three weeks due to high water. This extends from St. Paul south to New Boston, Illinois. This closure will impact the delivery of grain and soybeans for the export market and northern-bound barges filled with fertilizer.
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates 25 basis points to 5.0% - 5.25% last week after their meeting.  This was expected and baked into the market.  Their remarks were interpreted that new hikes may be paused for a while and there’s a possibility of a rate cut by September.
Internationally, Russian officials are “still not satisfied” with progress on the Black Sea grain export deal, following talks with the U.N. in Moscow. The deal expires on May 18. Moscow has threatened to quit the agreement intended to help ease a global food crisis. Turkey and the United Nations are working to extend the deal. In the meantime, no new ships were authorized to leave Ukraine ports on Friday, though inspections are continuing, and vessels remain inbound and outbound in Turkish waters. It said that 90 ships, including 62 vessels for loading, were waiting in Turkey's territorial waters for approval to go to Ukrainian ports.
Argentina’s harvest is rolling along with beans at 36% cut with corn 20% combined. Early yields are pointing toward a total bean yield of just 680-730 MBU crop with the total corn yield topping out at 1.1 BBU. The April USDA report had Argentina’s total yields at 990 MBU for beans and 1.45 BBU for corn. The world cash market is beginning to address these shocking differences, but the futures prices have not. The May 12th USDA report should show sharp cuts to Argentina’s expected production.
On December 1st, 2022, Valley United acquired the agronomy center in Climax, MN from Columbia Grain International. The facility is 8 years old and ties into our trade area very nicely. We are excited to add this location and their employees to our company.
This past month I was lucky enough to be able to travel to South Africa. It was a wonderful experience for a North Dakota farm boy. It was the trip of a lifetime, and I will remember it forever. Wonderful place to visit with good friends. I learned a lot about South African agriculture.  The only downside was 20 hours on an airplane…… way! I know what jetlag is! After 8 days of being gone, I was thinking I was Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz… “There is no place like home.” And I’m talking North Dakota, not Kansas, (for my friend in Kansas, Stan!)
2023 is the 15th anniversary of sorts. In 2008 Reynolds United Co-op lost its main grain facility @ Reynolds to a fire on Memorial Day morning. I remember coming into Reynolds @ sunrise on May 26th, 2008, and seeing the rubble and smelling the smoke. That is something I will never forget. I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders, but the support in the fire’s aftermath I received kept me going.  While the rebuilding process is not a joy, today we are very proud of our facility in Reynolds. It’s a monument to the support of our patrons and I feel very proud to be at the helm of a company that can rebound from a devastating event to be “better than ever” but thinking about it still gives me chills and always will.
Prices have dropped off the past few weeks so I decided to compare our current prices to those paid May 8th, 2022, and 5 years ago, May 8th, 2018. Today wheat is $8.15. On May 8th, 2022, it was $11.63 and in May of 2018, it was $6.04. Corn is @ $5.77, last year $7.47, and in 2018, $3.58. Soybeans today are at $13.20, 2018 - $15.20 and in 2018 beans were $9.30. That’s a WIDE range of prices!
USDA has their monthly crop/stocks report out. It should be interesting.
This Sunday (May 14th) is Mother’s Day. Please treat your mother to brunch, send flowers, card, or call her. Tell her how much she means to you. I lost my mom 15 years ago & I can only wish I could call her once more on Mother’s Day to tell her I loved her.
My mom had a unique sense of humor. Everyone who had interactions with her found that out. Even though she’s been gone for 15 years, she continues to touch us with her “humor”. Recently My sister-in-law Rachel found a bible that mom had, that Mark had taken home when we went through the mom and dad’s house. She was paging through it and found a $1 bill, upon looking further, found another! With excitement, she continued paging thru it and found a $100 bill……………. Fake! Yup, Mom is up to her tricks again. She’s smiling down on us knowing she got us again, but upset it took us 15 years to find it!
Here are a few quotes on our “Mom’s Influence” in our lives. I think we can all relate to quite a few of these!
My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE.
"If you're going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning."

My mother taught me RELIGION.
"You better pray that will come out of the carpet."

My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL.
"If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week!"

My mother taught me LOGIC.
"Because I said so, that's why."

My mother taught me FORESIGHT.
"Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident."

My mother taught me IRONY
"Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about."

My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM.
"Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!"

My mother taught me about STAMINA.
"You'll sit there until all that spinach is gone."

My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.
"If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate!"

My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE.
"I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."

My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.
"Stop acting like your father!"

My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.
"Just wait until your dad gets home."

My mother taught me HUMOR.
"When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."

My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT.
"If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up."

My mother taught me about my ROOTS.
"Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?"

My mother taught me WISDOM.
"When you get to be my age, you'll understand."

And my favorite: My mother taught me about JUSTICE.
"One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you.”
And remember………………. “The most important things in life are your friends, family, health, good humor, and a positive attitude towards life. If you have these then you have everything!"
If God brings you to it, he'll bring you through it.............


Read More News

Sep 07, 2023
Members of both Valley United Co-op & Thompson Farmers Elevator Company voted to merge on Wednesday, September 6th. Patrons of the Cooperative approved the merger after the boards of directors decided it would be beneficial and scheduled a vote. 
Sep 01, 2023
The Boards of Thompson Farmers Co-op Elevator and Valley United Coop will be having informational meetings along with Special stockholder meeting(s) on September 6th. It will be 6:00 PM at the Thompson Community Center and at 8:00 PM at the KC Hall in Reynolds.
Jul 21, 2023
Once again, Valley United Co-op teamed up with Land O’Lakes to provide a donation to the Sand Hill Settlement Historical Society Museum in Climax, MN. Location Manager, Dan Nelson presented the check to the committee on July, 20, 2023.