Brainard, NE & Elmwood, NE – Following a four-week voting period, Frontier Cooperative and Midwest Farmers Cooperative members approved the unification of their cooperatives. The unification of the two cooperatives will be effective September 1, 2019.
Frontier Cooperative passed the unification resolution with 69.30% voting Yes. Midwest Farmers Cooperative passed the unification resolution with 70.45% voting Yes. Each membership base met Nebraska’s state voting requirement for a successful cooperative unification as certified by independent auditing firm of Gardiner Companies.
“Approval of this unification of equals shows a strong commitment on the part of our members to grow the strength of the cooperative system for the future,” said Randy Robeson, General Manager of Frontier Cooperative.
Midwest Farmers Cooperative CEO Jeremy Wilhelm was appreciative of the commitment shown to the unification process as well. “The Boards of Directors and employees spent a great deal of time analyzing this opportunity before presenting it to our members for a vote,” said Wilhelm. “The time taken by our members to understand what we were proposing shows their engagement and commitment to helping us be a better organization.”
The name of the unified cooperative has not yet been chosen. That decision, as well as other work related to the integration of the two companies, will take place over the coming months. Neil Stedman, Board Chair for Midwest Farmers Cooperative, knows there is more work to be done. “We are planning an integration process that will enhance the future success of our operations. Over time, we hope to build on the strong business of each cooperative to continue to provide excellent services, technology and products to our members.”
As a unified company, Frontier and Midwest Farmers will operate approximately 50 grain, agronomy, energy and feed locations across 14 counties in east-central Nebraska.
“We’ve heard our members support the unification over the past couple of months, and it will help position us strategically for the future in the state of Nebraska,” said Frontier Cooperative Board Chair Greg Sabata. “Now we need to continue to grow and support our members as they compete in the marketplace.”
The unified cooperative will be led by current Midwest Farmers Cooperative CEO, Jeremy Wilhelm. The board will be made up of 18 directors, nine from each cooperative. More information regarding the integration process will be made available throughout the summer.