What They Needed
Efficiency and member value were the driving forces behind Premier Ag’s new state-of-the-art agronomy facility in Shelbyville, IN. The central Indiana cooperative closed two aging locations in favor of the larger, centrally located site.
Premier Ag realized that the benefits of automation from Murray Equipment — improved speed, accuracy, and accounting — outweighed trying to maintain the old locations.
“We used to do everything manually. That meant that we would start filling a truck, go home for lunch, come back, and it would still be filling. Now we can fill it accurately in less than 15 minutes!” Branch Manager Burke Admire says.
Going from manual operation to full automation, the learning curve was a big concern. “We were apprehensive at first, but the ICS ControlPro software is very intuitive. It just makes sense. And I know that if there is a problem, I still can operate things manually,” Admire says.
What We Designed
The 18,000-square-foot facility features two loadout bays — one top load, one bottom load, a mini-bulk filling station, 35,000 gallons of bulk herbicide storage, approximately 10,000 gallon of mini-bulk herbicides, and 600 tons of liquid fertilizer storage. Additional storage will be added as member demand is assessed. The ICS ControlPro software automatically imports tickets from the agronomy software, blends the batches at the direction of a few mouse clicks, and then sends the data back to the home office for inventory and billing.
Member feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Loads are completed accurately and on time. The driving time between the old locations and new has completely been made up for in productivity and speed.
“One of the first loads we did on the new system was for an influential member who is also quite particular. We were nervous,” Admire says. “But the system just did it. Not only was it fast, it was completely accurate! The member was very pleased.”