Fifteen years and focused on the future.
Maple River Grain & Agronomy LLC was formed on June 1, 2004, with the merger of the Farmer’s Cooperative Elevator Company of Prosper, AGP Grain of Casselton, and Chaffee-Lynchburg Farmer’s Elevator.
In 2018, Chaffee-Lynchburg and Prosper Farmers Co-op Elevator merged to form Maple River Co-op, which now owns 71.30% of Maple River Grain & Agronomy LLC. The remaining 28.70% is owned by AGP Grain Ltd. in Omaha, NE. Modifying our business structure in this way helped streamline our board of directors, realign our company by-laws and made our patronage process more transparent and easier to understand.
As a local cooperative, we are responsive to the needs of our member-owners, who are represented by the farmers who serve on our board of directors. One of the beauties of the cooperative system is that members purchase farm inputs and market their grain through the co-op, and part of the profits generated by these activities are then returned to our member owners in the form of patronage.
The original Board of Directors from 2004 unanimously approved the following mission statement, which still serves as our guiding principle today:
Patronage dividends are possible because of our strong balance sheet performance and our cooperative history. As a local cooperative, we are responsive to the needs of our member-owners, who are represented by the farmers who serve on our board of directors. One of the beauties of the cooperative system is that members purchase farm inputs and market their grain through the co-op, and part of the profits generated by these activities are then returned to our member owners in the form of patronage. On an annual basis, the board of directors meet to declare patronage and determine what allocation years to retire. For our customers to receive patronage, there are a few qualifications. A minimum patronage amount of $100 must be earned in order to receive a patronage distribution check. As mentioned above, patronage is earned on the purchase of farm inputs and marketing of grain. Our patronage rates are determined by our independent audit team and our accounting staff assists with the distribution of checks at our annual meeting.
Member owners who do at least $5,000 worth of business with Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC per calendar year obtain voting rights at the annual meeting. This membership criteria updates on an annual basis and members are notified of voting rights via written correspondence in advance of the annual meeting.
Since our 10 year anniversary in 2014, we’ve paid out patronage earnings of just under $10 million. Our success over the past fifteen years and the ability to continually pay out these dividends to our member owners is because of the strong relationships we have formed with our loyal patrons. With their continued support, we can continue to finance our growing company and capitalize on other opportunities to enhance our future.
One of our top priorities at Maple River Grain & Agronomy is hiring and retaining the best people we can find. Our employees are truly the face of our company in each of the communities we serve. Most of them are lifelong North Dakotans who love living in this part of the country. Many have earned a degree from NDSU or other colleges or universities, and others were hired from competing coops or retail businesses because they have what it takes to help us be better.
We are always looking for people with great customer service skills and a strong work ethic to fill positions at each of our locations. If you have a friend or family member who fit this description—including students who are finishing up their high school or college careers—have them fill out an online application and return it to our Human Resources Department in Casselton.
Board of Directors
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The communities we serve include Casselton, Leonard, Lynchburg-Chaffee, Peak, Prosper, Barnesville, Dilworth, Rothsay, Sabin, and Kragnes. The Board of Directors, as well as every employee at Maple River Grain & Agronomy, believe that we have a responsibility to these towns—to operate our facilities safely and with respect for our neighbors, and to give back to the places where we also live and work.
In 2018, Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC partnered with CoBank in their “Sharing Success” charitable matching grant program. CoBank contributed $5000.00 and Maple River Grain & Agronomy, LLC matched $5000.00 to present checks to two important non-profits in Cass County: Cass County Rural Community Emergency Food Pantry, a non-profit organization in Casselton serving those in need by providing groceries, personal, and household items, was awarded a total of $4,000.
Dollars for Scholars
And Central Cass Dollars for Scholars, a non- profit scholarship organization that promotes all types of secondary education opportunities for students in the Central Cass School District, was awarded $6,000.00
Maple River Grain & Agronomy also sponsored FFA jackets for ten deserving students in our area to help promote education and careers in agriculture.
Celebrating 15 Years
Explore Maple River Grain and Agronomy’s history by viewing our interactive timeline spanning 2004 to the present day.