2020: A Year We Will Long Remember

Dec 15, 2020
2020 will be a year we would all like to forget, but a year we will long remember. We witnessed a worldwide pandemic, social unrest and national leadership change.  We continue to fight the coronavirus and the economic and social impact it has had on all of us. Unfortunately, it appears the lingering effects will flow over into 2021. As I mentioned in my last article, many great people have risen to the occasion to provide important services to those in need. I want to thank the employees at United Cooperative for all their hard work and effort during this time for meeting the expectations of our customers. I would also like to thank our patrons for “Relying on Us” through this difficult journey. We are grateful for the faith and trust you have placed in United Cooperative. 

On a positive note, we were really blessed with a fantastic crop year. The planting season starting early and strong. We moved a lot of product in a short period of time. The weather conditions remained favorable throughout the growing season except for the lack of moisture in some of our trade territory. The harvest season was one of the best in several years and even the yields supported optimism. The added benefit for this crop year was the price increase for commodities during harvest. Much to be thankful for!
December 31st marks the end of our fiscal year and the privilege of being in business for 85 years. While the year and financial numbers will not be final until the audit is completed in early 2021, it looks like the cooperative will have another strong year. Planning, execution, product availability, customer service and loyal members make the foundational building blocks for this type of success.

Named a top cooperative by USDA

United Cooperative was named to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Top 100 Cooperatives in October. At number 40 on the list, United Cooperative is up one spot from a year ago. As President and CEO at United Cooperative, I’m proud the cooperative was recognized on this list. However, no matter the size or scale, we are only doing our job effectively when the cooperative returns profits and protects shareholder value for our members. I am pleased that we have been able to continue the strong patronage programs to our members by distributing over $16.5 million in 2020. Over the last five years we have returned $121.3 million in cash patronage to our members. These dollars are re-invested by members back into their operations and local communities. As that’s one of the many values of doing business cooperatively.

Our vision for the future and success at United Cooperative will always be based on the principles of sound business practices. We can accomplish our vision by the expert team we have and the insights and information we gather from you, our members.

As your operations grow and change, so do our four core divisions in order to create a positive customer experience and the ability to meet your demands at the time of delivery and use. Please have a conversation with your trusted advisors at United Cooperative as you prepare for your 2021 farm plan and inputs. Decision making, forecasting and planning all have a direct impact on profitability now and into the future.

Supporting those in need

Lastly with the holidays upon us, we are reminded that many in our communities are not as fortunate as ourselves. United Cooperative and the Land O’ Lakes Foundation has come together to donate $51,500 to 50 local food pantries. According to local sources, for every dollar donated, a food pantry can purchase five pounds of food, which means the money donated is enough to buy 257,500 pounds of food. United Cooperative, through our stewardship program, is pleased to be involved in this community outreach and truly reflects one of our core values.  

Thank you again for your patronage in 2020 and I look forward to an exciting and prosperous year in 2021. All of us at United Cooperative would like to wish you a blessed holiday season. Merry Christmas!
Cooperatively yours,

David Cramer

President and Chief Executive Officer



David Cramer

Filed Under: Corporate News