The boards of directors from Select Sires Inc. and five local member cooperatives have voted to unite the federation to become Select Sires Cooperative Inc. The board-led initiative represents an exciting chapter in Select Sires’ history and reflects the best interest of their farmer-owners and employees. The decision must next be ratified by delegates or member-owners from each of the five member cooperatives.
Among the many benefits of unification, perhaps the most meaningful is Select Sires will remain a farmer-owned and -controlled cooperative with grassroots leadership throughout the United States. All customer-owner membership and patronage due will be transferred to and paid by Select Sires Cooperative Inc.
“The decision to unify is going to be a pivotal force for Select Sires. We have had a tremendous history of success, but we can’t lean on our laurels,” said Dorothy Harms, chairman of Select Sires Inc. Board of Directors. “We must move forward, look to the future and make changes to secure our position as the industry leader.”
As part of a strategic planning program that was initiated in 2016, each of the six member cooperatives and Select Sires Inc. signed a letter of intent, a non-binding agreement, that enabled the cooperatives to study the benefits, opportunities and risks of a potential unification. Farmer boards from five of the six cooperatives, including All West/Select Sires, CentralStar Cooperative Inc., COBA/Select Sires Inc., Select Sires MidAmerica Inc., and Minnesota Select Sires Co-op, Inc., voted to recommend the unification proposal to their respective delegate or farmer-owner voting body. While the vote to recommend unification was not unanimous, Premier Select Sires will remain a Cooperative Member of Select Sires Cooperative Inc. and will have access to Select Sires’ genetics and programs.
Select Sires assures farmer-owners will not experience service changes pending unification of the cooperatives. With no overlap in sales and service territories, dairy and beef customers will continue to receive the same, exceptional service from their local representatives. By uniting the federation, Select Sires will create even greater value for their customers by providing access to a broader, more diverse team of experts. Combining resources and enhancing efficiencies internally will allow for valuable investment in research and technology without raising costs to farmer-owners. Expansion of research efforts will translate to innovative solutions, tools and products for Select Sires’ dairy and beef producers.
Unification of the federation will solidify Select Sires’ leadership and viability in the industry. Producers can expect to continue working with highly qualified, passionate individuals who know and understand the cattle breeding industry. As a unified cooperative, Select Sires will continue the tradition of excellence while maintaining grassroots leadership and holding the success of farmer-owners and employees above all else.