MFA Celebrates A Century In Ag Retail

Columbia’s MFA Incorporated will begin a year of celebrating its 100th anniversary in business with a presentation 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., October 28, in the Columns Ballroom, Reynolds Alumni Center, on the University of Missouri campus.

Bill Streeter, president and CEO of the company, and his leadership team, will review the company’s history and discuss its future goals.

MFA is the oldest regional farm supply and marketing cooperative in the United States. It serves more than 45,000 farmers and ranchers, and supplies feed, plant food and crop-protection products. It has sales of more than $1 billion annually.

Founded on March 10, 1914, MFA (which then stood for Missouri Farmers Association) was organized in Brunswick, MO, at the Newcomer School. William Hirth was MFA’s founder, serving until his death in 1940. By the 1920s, MFA represented 400 local cooperatives. The cooperative created independent companies to serve its members: MFA Oil in 1929 and Shelter Insurance in 1946.

Streeter’s Oct. 28 presentation, open to the public, is part of the Executive-in-Residence, a program by the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR).  Streeter, a 1970 graduate of CAFNR with a degree in agriculture, will lead several classes Oct. 28-29 as an Executive-in-Residence. These classes will detail the nation’s agriculture marketing system, leadership and communication skills. Streeter will host a seminar that will give students one-on-one interaction and insight into business and government.

The CAFNR Executive-in-Residence Program, inaugurated in 1997, was endowed by the Robert Reich family. The program brings business executives and students together in an informal environment that allows spontaneous interaction.

After graduation from CAFNR, Streeter served in the U.S. Army, including a tour in Vietnam with the field artillery.

In April 1973, he joined MFA Oil Company as a technical sales representative. In 1978, Streeter became Manager of Farm Supply for MFA Incorporated, and in 1982 he was promoted to Sales Manager for Retail Distribution.

Streeter was promoted to Vice President of Corporate Sales for MFA Incorporated in 1986. He was made Senior Vice president of the Agri Services Division in 1999. In that capacity, he headed a structure responsible for more than 130 MFA company-owned retail facilities, seven feed manufacturing locations, 97 plant foods operations, and a wide variety of MFA subsidiaries and joint ventures.

Streeter became President and CEO of MFA in March 2009. During this tenure, he implemented an enhanced strategic planning program for finance, marketing and risk management. Sales increased 40%, and under these plans, the company’s net worth has nearly doubled. He has also guided the company toward a comprehensive employee training program to ensure MFA stays in the lead for agricultural technology and delivers top-tier professional service to its customers.

Streeter serves as President of the MFA Incorporated Charitable Foundation, and President of the MFA Foundation. He serves as a trustee for the MU College of Agriculture Foundation.

Previous CAFNR Executives-in-Residence include Michael D’Ambrose, senior vice president of Archer Daniels Midland Company; Richard D. Maltsbarger, senior vice president of Strategy for Lowe’s; William Buckner, president and CEO of Bayer CropScience; and Carl Hausmann, chief executive officer of Bunge North America.

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