An Update from VP of Operations Heath Harrison
In 2017, the Thresher Artisan Wheat harvest season was extended due to weather that had caused delays in spring planting. Despite the delays, our merchandising and field staff continued to work diligently to sample producer’s fields, check moisture levels and check proteins that allowed for Thresher to maximize bin space at each facility. At the same time, this minimized downtime for producers by forecasting which fields they could harvest next. Thresher employees and management believe that in safety “zero is possible,” and it was demonstrated with all the field work completed without any injuries throughout our service area.
Within Thresher’s service area, the Newdale plant handled 24 percent more bushels this year with the new facility and bagger systems in place and at full operation. Idaho Falls, Blackfoot, Moreland, Rockford and American Falls overcame regional storage shortages by moving grain and directing it to facilities that could accommodate, which allowed for all our producers to find a place for their grain. Last year, Thresher experimented with grain bagging and successfully bagged just under 400k bushels of wheat. This year the baggers enabled our crew to pack away just under 750k bushels. This helped the region create additional storage for grain that otherwise would have gone to waste due to the storage shortage created by the malt industry.]
Along with unexpected delays, the 2017 harvest season even battled an eclipse. The eclipse was expected to draw 350k to 500k people to Thresher’s service area in the form of tourists, vendors, and even NASA crews. It was feared that this anticipated influx of people would bring harvesting to a standstill. Thresher ensured producers that no delay decisions would be made until August 21, 2017, the day of the event. With producers wanting to continue harvesting, Thresher kept all facilities throughout the valley open for business. Thresher remained committed to customer service and serviced the region in a responsible manner, even pausing with “eclipse glasses” to enjoy the rare event.
Thresher values your opinion to continue to improve service to producers. Please share any feedback or thoughts on the 2017 harvest season with your local Thresher facility.