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Chad Fullerton, Missouri

 

Chad Fullerton headshotClear Advantages of Buying Direct

Chad Fullerton farms peanuts, cotton, corn, soybeans and rice in southeast Missouri. With a wide array of crops and a robust nutrition program, ADM Farm Direct Fertilizer has helped his operation save money while optimizing his team’s schedule.

Flexibility and Savings in Owning a Spreader

Chad knew from the beginning that forward pricing on inputs could be a gamechanger.

“We got really excited about forward pricing because it’s never happened before. It’s given me an opportunity to get out there and get my inputs fixed — and fertilizer being one of the biggest. So, we got really pumped and got into the fertilizer business immediately.”

Investing in a spreader to save on costs of using a third party was an easy decision for Chad.

“When we went to Farm Direct, we bought our own spreader truck so we could do it on our time. Since we can hold the product from ADM, we decided to do it all ourselves, and that saved us a lot of money to start with, because we’re not hiring a third-party company.”

More specifically, when applying nitrogen for corn, the spreader quickly proved its value in Chad’s operation.

“The spreader purchase was the biggest moneymaker we’ve seen in a long time. We decided to break down corn fertilizer three to four times. So, if we’re going to do it ourselves, and we have our own truck, I’m not being charged three or four times to continue to apply nitrogen.”

When it comes to uncontrollable factors like weather, Chad and his team take further advantage of the scheduling flexibility owning a spreader allows.

“We’re also doing it on our weather schedule. So, if we’re seeing rain forecast in two or three days out and we want to work 18-hour days, hey, that’s our choice. We don’t have to rely on somebody else to do so. ADM has given us the opportunity to handle it ourselves,” he says.

Time Given Back

Chad describes the time saved thanks to the simplicity and efficiency of direct purchasing.

“ADM Farm Direct got us over more acres faster. Since we’ve provided ourselves with the infrastructure to get the fertilizer from ADM back here, we’ve been able to be across more acres more efficiently,” he says.

Farmers like Chad also know that dollar amounts aren’t the only measurement of profit or loss in agriculture, no matter the size or type of operation.

“It doesn’t matter the farm size. If you’re hedging your opportunity cost, you’re making profits.”

A Partnership with Proven Value 

Overall, Chad is pleased with the simplicity of buying through ADM Farm Direct Fertilizer and having a hub of information relevant to his needs.

“ADM has been very easy. It allows us to go ahead and make a decision even a year ahead of time, and it also makes it easy to make the decision on the crop you want to plant, and you can have your inputs fixed and you can see a profit before you even plant the crop.”

Chad also stays plugged into the monthly reports produced by ADM to monitor both fertilizer and grain pricing.

“I do read through those like a commodity report, and it gives us a good option to make our own decisions to either hedge some fertilizer, or we get insights of whether it’s going up or down or flat. But it does give you a good opportunity to figure out where your fertility price is going to be before you start pricing grain or cotton or whatnot,” he says.

Tying together on-farm storage, a spreader truck and ongoing market monitoring helps Chad confidently guide his operation while saving money — and maybe most importantly, time.

 

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