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AgYield program helps manage grain marketing

While AgYield may be only five years old, the company has deep roots in the agricultural trade business and promises its product will yield dividends for farmers who use its services.

“AgYield helps farmers build a profitable grain marketing plan.  The agricultural industry is far more complicated than it was 20, 30 years ago,” AgYield Director of Business Development and Sales Chris Beavers said. “There are more factors to consider (such as) investment vehicles and risk management tools.  There are people who make an entire career out of just one aspect of the ag industry.”

Beavers explained why he believes AgYield is a necessary tool for farmers.

“American farmers are experts in raising the best crops in the world.  That said, they don’t have the time to follow the markets by the minute, understand the various crop insurance policies by county, understand seed and fertilizer considerations, etc.,” Beavers said. “It’s all too much for one person to do alone and effectively.  AgYield is a tool that makes the marketing aspect of farming easy, while helping the grower to base those marketing decisions on fact — not fluff.”

AgYield was created by the founders of the Iowa Grain Company, which 45 years ago launched the largest family-owned future commission merchants on the Chicago Stock Exchange. The company was sold in 2008 and AgYield was spun off as a separate company in 2012.

There are two monthly plans for users of AgYield and Beavers broke down the differences between them.

“The $60 package is for the farmer that is a little more tech savvy and comfortable with using software.  It gives the grower access to the AgYield software and their account,” Beavers said.  “AgYield will do the initial account set-up and help the individual build their land and crop information into their account so as to ensure things are accurate from the start.  From that point, the farmer will run and manage their account independently.  AgYield personnel are always available to support when needed.”

The major difference between the $150 plan and the $60 plan is the utilizations of the AgYield team.

“The $150 package is for the farmer who wants some assistance running their account and to have someone ‘watching out’ for them,” Beavers said.  “AgYield personnel will set-up the account, input a grower’s land and crop, as well as enter cash sales, run ‘what if’ scenarios, etc. for growers for the life of the relationship.

“For example, a farmer can call AgYield as he leaves the elevator to tell us how many bushels he/she just sold and at what price,” he continued. “We will then enter that cash transaction into their account and by the time they get home and log into their AgYield account, that sale will be reflected.”

Another big selling point AgYield offers to its customers is it’s “What if” feature. “What if” allows famers to run an infinite amount of scenarios for a forecast matrix, which they create, and then they can see the various results based on information they have input.

“The ‘What if’ feature is the most powerful and value-adding aspect of AgYield,” Beavers said. “The farmer can set the parameters for the matrix (graph) — range of prices and range of yields.  The matrix then displays the ‘profit per acre’ that a farmer can expect given all the data he/she has entered  such as land, crop, crop insurance, yields, etc.”  

“Also, the farmer can evaluate the ‘profit per acre’ by including/excluding certain elements of their marketing strategy,” he continued.  “(They can) tick the box to include crop insurance when identifying when indemnity payments will “kick in.”  Tick boxes for cash sales, unsold bushels and cost of production to see what their operation is looking at in terms of profits.  For more progressive growers, they can tick the box for Futures/Options to include the impact of their hedging efforts.”

Beavers said farmers in Jasper County and other parts of Central Iowa have taken to AgYield and it is a useful tool to just about anyone in the agriculture industry.

“In addition to AgYield as a product and service to individual farmers, the program is invaluable to vendors as well,” Beavers said. “From brokers, to co-ops, crop insurance agents and consultants, they can each leverage AgYield to provide customized, client-specific recommendations and service to their farmer clients.”

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