Continuing the Legacy

St. Cloud Agenda Posted

Who else can’t believe our St. Cloud seminar is only 2 weeks away?! Time just keeps flying by, and we’re so excited to offer this 1-day seminar.

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We’ll be kicking the day off promptly at 9:00am with a few words from our General Manager, Dean Craine, followed by our featured speaker Dick Goff.

Dick has a degree from the University of Minnesota in horticulture and plant pathology. He worked several years as an agronomist for pesticide, seed, and fertilizer companies before beginning a long career as a field representative for Midwest Labs of Omaha, NE. He is now semi-retired and will be sharing with us how calcium can play a key role in soil and plant health. His many years of trouble shooting soil conditions has given him an unparalleled ability to share with us “what works” in sustainable crop production.

Other items on the agenda include:

  • Fertility Programs to include discussion on SP-1™, Myco Seed Treat® (Mycorrhizal Fungi), and Residuce®
  • Seed Selection
  • Weed Control
  • Insect & Disease Control
  • Dry Bean Harvest
  • Dry Bean Marketing

If any of this strikes your interest, please RSVP by January 4 by calling 815.872.1190 or emailing info@agrienergy.net. If you do come, be sure to register for the Minnesota Organic Conference and visit us at the trade show. We’d love a chance to further help you plan your 2017 fertility program so you can spend more quality time with your loved ones.

Please note: We will be closed for the holidays from December 23-January 2. If you happen to RSVP during this time frame, please leave a message at any of the contacts above and we’ll get you added to the list. When leaving a message, please remember to include your name, state, and specify the St. Cloud seminar.

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Happy Holidays!

holiday-hours

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Remembering Ray

This man. Raymond Roettger. August 21, 1945 – November 27, 2016. Salesman – Servant – Friend.

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Raymond Roettger                                                                    

This man touched so many lives in his short 71 years on earth. In fact, he’s one of the reasons AgriEnergy Resources exists today. He convinced our founder, Dave Larson, that he indeed had to start a business to sell his fertilizers 29 years ago. And here we are today, thriving, thanks to these 2 innovative farmers.

The first time I met Ray was at the ACRES Conference 2 years ago. He came up to me after a session and with a silly grin asked, “Where are you taking me to eat, Mom?” You can imagine my surprise as the age difference was pointed out! I was 25; he was 69. Since then, he’s become more than a co-worker to me. He became a friend.

At this past ACRES Conference we learned just how much he impacted not only us, but his customers as well. It was weird setting up our booth without him, but somehow we made it through. It was made a bit easier by the wonderful words and memories from so many others. Such as Edwin Blosser. Edwin runs Midwest Bio Systems in Tampico, Illinois and has worked with Ray for years. He said, “Ray was a wonderful friend, someone who would empathize with any struggles I would share. Someone who I was comfortable in confiding to, although I had not had the opportunity lately, as our paths didn’t cross much recently. Ray’s passing is a loss that causes us to stop in our tracks, understand anew that life is short and that we want to live it to the fullest, honoring God in thankfulness. I thank God for the privilege/gift of knowing Ray, being able to interact with him, and being challenged to improve as a result of our interaction!”

Another testament to Ray was from our owners, Paul and Barb Aley. They will remember his off the cuff jokes and his passion for the soil. “Ray was so down to earth in personality and literally with his profession. He was/is just priceless and we thank the Lord for him and for knowing him. Ray is unforgettable. I write this laughing as I know he and Dave are swapping stories with great guffaws. Those two and their humor. But at the root of both these personalities was integrity of caring for life: soil, crops, people.”

J.P. Aley adds his first impression of Ray was not what he expected. He found Ray standing up, with his head in a lampshade! Turns out that was the only place Ray had cell service as he was trying to talk with a customer. “I will forever be grateful to Ray,” J.P. said. “Sure he was a fantastic salesman, and will be greatly missed at AER; but even more importantly, I will always be grateful for the kind of person he was. He helped people, and loved doing it. We’re all lucky to have known him.”

Lucky we are. His fellow salesman always looked forward to working with him and hearing him speak at seminars.

“He could turn a dry and technical topic like soil fertility into a motivational speech that left the group of farmers pumped up and ready to take on any challenge,” said sales agronomists Gary Campbell. “I will always remember the 2 legged horse videos and pictures of tractors buried to the cab, reminding us to find humor in any situation and give thanks for the many blessing in our lives. It could always be worse!”

Sales agronomist Ken Musselman remembers, “I think of the time several years ago before cell phones when I was helping Ray with summer field visits. We finished a long day in his area and were heading north for more visits the next day. There were a couple of people from Australia with us so we were in at least 2 vehicles. Ray and I got to Terre Haute at 2am and Ray said it was time to call it a day. So we were sitting in a parking lot facing the highway so we could flag down the other vehicles to let them know we were stopping. Ray and I had trouble keeping our eyes open as we watched for them. You could always count on short nights when traveling with Ray. He always said he didn’t want me to get bed sores.”

But that wasn’t all Ray became known for at AgriEnergy. He named his GPS after our communication gal, Mardel Robinson. “So she could always tell me where to go,” he used to say.

That sense of humor will definitely be missed. Especially by our human resources gal Linda Dickinson, “He was a wonderful person and had a big heart! I will miss his phone conversations and his sense of humor.”

And our general manager, Dean Craine. You could always tell when he had been out with Ray. He’d always come back to the office as happy as can be, with a renewed sense of vision.

The list could go on, but I think you get the idea. Raymond Roettger will be greatly missed not only by us, but by many of you too.

So, Ray, if you’re reading this somewhere beyond the clouds, we’d like to send you off with this Irish proverb. May the road rise up to meet you, May the wind be always at your back, May the sun shine warm upon your face, May the rains fall soft upon your fields, And until we meet again, May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

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Roettger remembered for serving attitude

It is with heavy hearts we announce the passing of a dear salesman, friend, and servant. Ray Roettger lost his battle with Lymphoma at 1:00 a.m. Sunday, November 27. ray-roettger

He was a great asset to our team and always had a
mischievous grin on his face. You could always count on Ray to help you with anything. Whether it was a fertility program for your farm or just a listening ear, he always made time for you.

As we celebrate Ray’s life this week, please feel free to send us your memories and we’ll share them on our social media pages.

Memories can be sent to our communication strategist at ksanden@agrienergy.net.

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Happy Thanksgiving

As I was going through my emails this morning, I came across the following quote. Usually, I think to myself, “What a nice thought!” And that’s as far as it goes. However, this quote really resonated within me.

The quote: “God is glorified, not by our groans, but by our thanksgivings. It is when we stop thinking about what we don’t have or what we lack, and become grateful for who we are, that we can gain access to true unlimited inspiration. Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action.– Frank Arrigazzi

God is glorified, not by our groans, but by our thanksgivings. How many times do you catch yourself groaning? There are so many days where I tear myself down. Whether it’s, “I wish I could be as good at my job as ______,” or “I wish I had the endurance of ______ at the gym,” or “Too bad we didn’t have a house like _____,” or “If only I could be as good of a wife as _____ is to her husband.”

But then I remember. God doesn’t make mistakes. He made me for who I am and I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be at this very moment. It is when we stop thinking about what we don’t have or what we lack, and become grateful for who we are, that we can gain access to true unlimited inspiration. I realize my life isn’t so bad; it’s actually pretty great. I mean I have a job I love (and awesome customers!), a CrossFit box (gym) that’s always challenging (and cheaper than therapy!), a charming little house (filled with love and some chaos!), a supportive church family, and an adoring husband. I can’t imagine my life any other way. Now, I realize in the blink of an eye, life can change and things won’t go according to plan. But in this very moment, in this very minute, I have everything I need. I am thankful. I am grateful. I am blessed.

sunrise

Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action. My Thanksgiving wish is that you, too, will gain true unlimited inspiration, even if it feels the world is caving in around you.

Happy Thanksgiving friends!

 

 

 

 

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Hope in healthy soil

You know how they say when you’re really stressed you’re supposed to go outside, take off your shoes, stand barefoot in the grass and just breathe? Something about re-grounding yourself. In my case, it’s a nice long run and then I’ll go barefoot. And you know what? Call me crazy, but I always feel better afterwards. Whether it’s a runner’s high or there really is something to “re-grounding” yourself, more times than not, it gets me through whatever issues I’m stressing over.

Well, according to a series of 15- and 30- second public service announcements the NRCS has distributed, there really may be something to “re-grounding” yourself. These PSA’s highlight the critical role healthy soil plays in our lives all over the country. They’re very well put together and show the solutions to many of our problems could be right beneath our feet. Check it out…could there be hope in healthy soil?

Healthy soil lays the foundation for the rest of our lives. I’ll let that sink in on this fine Earth Day.

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New & emerging markets

At AgriEnergy Resources, we’re devoted to helping our conventional, biological, and organic farmers get the biggest bang for their buck. With traditional markets struggling right now that can be a tall task. So we’d like to point you toward some alternative markets available for specialty crops, new crops, and organic crops. These newer marketing opportunities are emerging and growing every day, and taking advantage of them could just be your ticket to that “big bang”.

We have compiled a list of buyers that our customers have worked with. Please note: this is NOT an exclusive list. If you or someone you know have another new or specialty marketing contact you’d like to add, let us know. We want to keep this list, and your bottom line, growing!

For corn and soybeans:

For small grains:

For dry beans:

For dairy:

For current organic prices, click here. To hear more about new and emerging markets, click hear to listen to the audio from our seminar.

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October: Soils & Products We Use

How fitting that October is dedicated to “soils & products we use” during the International Year of Soils. Most of us are out working the soil right now. Maybe you’re reading this in the tractor or combine. Maybe you’re reading this while picking pumpkins, apples, or squash. Maybe you’re reading this on your porch while enjoying the beautiful, crisp, fall weather. No matter where you are, soils play a vital role in the Earth’s ecosystem.

For example, soils helped filter yesterday’s rainwater in our fields and regulated the discharge of excess precipitation. When managed properly, soil reduces the hazard of flooding and is capable of storing large amounts of organic carbon.

Using Residuce® to recycle your 2015 crop residues can reduce your 2016 fertilizer costs with live microbes that break down crop residues. The proof in in the picture - Residuce® used on right.

Using Residuce® to recycle your 2015 crop residues can reduce your 2016 fertilizer costs with live microbes that break down crop residues. The proof in in the picture – Residuce® used on right.

I read an article the other day where the author referred to soil as earth’s living skin, providing us with resources to live such as food and shelter. So it only makes sense to use the cleanest, safest products in the industry to care for our soils.

Right now, in the midst of harvest, we really recommend applying Residuce® to improve soil tilth and seedbed establishment for the next growing season. When applied at the right time, Residuce® can accelerate plant residue breakdown and nutrient re-cycling. It’s a blend of microbes, enzymes, humates, and food sources that could lower your 2016 fertilizer inputs by making mineral nutrients available to crops more quickly.

Join us this month as we talk soil and products we use during the International Year of Soils.

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A peek into the “hottest” Illinois wedding

Well you guys. It finally happened. I married my very best friend! And I’m back from our eastern Caribbean honeymoon, refreshed and ready to bring you some pretty awesome posts in the next few weeks, but first I want to share some of the highlights of our wedding with you guys. My AgriEnergy family did a pretty good job of calming this bride down in the thick of planning and some even helped out with the flowers. So naturally I have to share some highlights, right?!

Saturday, September 5, 2015 was destined to be the best day. I jumped out of bed, hopped in the car with my sister (who was also the best maid of honor ever), jammed out to Dixie Chicks “Chapel of Love” drinking my Starbucks coffee labeled “Bride.” Yep, I set the tone off right.

Words can’t even describe how the rest of the day played out, even if it was 90+ degrees. It was better than anything I had ever dreamed. Typing this gives me goosebumps! It was so neat to see everyone’s hard work pay off. Brian and I poured ourselves into every single little detail of our wedding and it was so neat.

We got married in a barn.

Mr. & Mrs. Brian Sanden

But first there were so many little details. Agriculture runs strong in both our families, which I hope we portrayed in everything we did. Like the sunflowers, for example.

Wedding Sunflowers

We were able to grow some, but a special shoutout to one of our very own agronomists Eric Johnston. His family helped out with the remaining sunflowers to finish the centerpieces. He is currently growing sunflowers in a cover-crop blend.

And the apples. Oh the apples. We had a caramel apple bar, apple cider slushies, and caramel apple cake pops.

Apples

These apples came from our trees in the backyard, but the real treat came from Christ’s Orchard of Elmwood, Illinois. They have been known to use some of our fertilizer recommendations on their trees and the fruit is oh so tasty.

And the bouquets. Oh the bouquets. They were even prettier than I had ever imagined. Even from the day I picked them out.

Bridal Flowers

Yes we all wore boots. My groom surprised me with the white gerbera daisy (our flower girl is holding) that morning because 1) gerbera daisies are my favorite flower and 2) he surprised me with gerbera daisy bouquets that entire week with one less flower each day counting down the days until “I Do.” Cue the awww factor 🙂

The dress. Oh the dress. It was magical. From the beading, to the train, to the veil, to the many intricate buttons down the back, to the lace, it was a match made in heaven (both the dress and my groom).

The Wedding Dress

The ceremony. Oh the ceremony. It was perfect! Instead of a unity candle, we did a unity tree.

Sanden Unity Tree

In the office, we joked this part would be an AER commercial during the wedding, promoting our fertilizer, fish, etc., but in all seriousness the tree was perfect for us. I am so excited to watch this tree grow much like our love will over the years. We planted a patio peach tree. It can stay in a pot on your patio all year long, even in the winter months. It’ll produce a bushel of peaches each year. We each used soil from each of our farms and our parents watered it. For us, it symbolized our love with roots that grow strong underground (where no one sees), joining our 2 lives (and farms) as one, and of course all the “fruit” that will come with time.

All in all, it was an absolutely beautiful day and the love shared between family, friends, and the AER family could not have been stronger.

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Aunt Charlotte

Back-up-blogger Mardel here again. Thanks for bearing with me. Katlyn will be back soon – I promise!

Today is my Aunt Charlotte’s 90th Birthday. A great milestone for a beautiful, gracious lady who looks a lot like Queen Elizabeth!

Aunt Charlotte and other beloved family members and friends from generations past are the ones who taught me about hard work, responsibility, honesty and trust, faith and family, stewardship and serving others. They helped me appreciate the simple things in life, and realize how blessed I was to grow up in a farming community.

Because of the examples set by my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles (Aunt Charlotte is the only one left) and a great bunch of neighbors, I understand that farming is much more than a livelihood – it’s a lifestyle. And I understand that farmers are much more than potential AgriEnergy customers – they are a very special group of people with whom I’m honored to travel through life. In fact, working with farmers is almost like opening a birthday present every day. It is indeed a blessing and a gift to work alongside the very men and women who feed our world.

Happy 90th Birthday Aunt Charlotte! And, thanks for the life lessons.

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