As any ag retailer knows, facilities do not exist in a vacuum. They are parts of the towns, cities, and municipalities in which they are located. This means that dealerships need to take the proper steps to protect not only their employees, but the surrounding landscape and neighbors as well. Below are quotes from various dealers that illustrate a thorough understanding of dealership stewardship and community.
“Ag Valley Coop had a grand opening tour at the dedication of our Edison liquid plant. The message was that we invested in this facility to ensure that nothing leaves the plant but through the equipment that sprays it on a field.” — Darrell Fellows, agronomy division manager, Ag Valley Coop, Edison, NE
“We achieve this in practice by utilizing state-of-the-art facilities and management techniques. We have stainless butterfly valves on our liquid storage facility hoses.” — Aaron Bagwell, agronomist, Wharton Farmers Co-op, Lynden, WA
“Everyone in our team feels the environment is a very delicate and important thing we all need to take care of. That is why all products at Simplot, whether it be a gallon of rinsate or a pile of fertilizer dust, are applied as intended.” — Daniel Full, representative, Simplot Grower Solutions, Hatfield, MN
“We have an outbuilding that has a shower if it is needed. We also furnish gloves, safety glasses, ear plugs, dust masks, respirators, and jump suits.” — Ed Everett, manager, Crop Production Services, Americus, GA
“Our wellhead is located west of our office, away from any chemicals and on the highest elevation on the premises.” — Mike Holzback, manager, Crop Production Services, Rushville, IN
“We have a very good relationship within our local school systems. We have been at the schools doing programs and have hosted a local college course here at the plant.” — Jon Barnes, location manager, Crop Production Services, Straughn, IN
Key Points To Consider:
• Liquid fertilizer facilities should have all the proper containment features and security options on the valves.
• Dealerships should make certain that all materials used at the facility are being handled and disposed of an environmentally sound manner.
• Safety equipment and materials used by employees should be located in an easily accessible location and employees should be trained to know where these items are on the facility grounds.
• A few times per year, ag retailers should reach out to local schools and colleges to increase community awareness on how outlets contribute to the area.