Co-ops See Record 2014 Income, Revenue


OMAHA (DTN) — U.S. farmer, rancher and fishery cooperatives posted record income and revenue last year, Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Wednesday.

Vilsack previewed a USDA report to be released later this month that shows cooperatives earned $6.5 billion in net income and generated $246.7 billion in total revenue in 2014, according to a USDA news release.

Net income increased 16.5{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130} while revenue rose 0.4{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130} from 2013. Co-ops set records for income and revenue in 2014 for the fourth year in a row, according the release.

“The nation's co-ops are essential to the U.S. economy and to rural America,” Vilsack stated in the news release. “The income they generate is reinvested or returned to members who spend it in their local communities. USDA is proud to continue its support of the cooperative movement.”

Ag co-op employment increased 0.4{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130} to 191,000 people in 2014. The number of full-time co-op employees dipped slightly, 0.4{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130}, while the number of part-time employees increased by 2{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130}, according to the release.

While income, revenue and employment increased in 2014, the total number of ag cooperatives declined from 2,186 in 2013 to 2,106 last year, a drop of nearly 4{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130}. Despite the decline, co-op memberships grew by 1{257ecae47c7fec349321aca28547072fa2160c1991a573be7695613338f0f130}, to just under 2 million, according to the news release. Many farmers and ranchers are members of more than one cooperative.

Vilsack also previewed findings from USDA's annual rankings of the nation's Top 100 Ag Co-ops.

The rankings show that 15 of the Top 100 agricultural co-ops are headquartered in Iowa, the most of any state, according to the USDA news release. Minnesota is home to the second most Top 100 agricultural co-ops, with 12 headquartered there. Nebraska is next with nine, followed by Illinois with six and California and Wisconsin, both with five. Indiana, Missouri and Ohio each have four Top 100 co-ops, while Kansas is home to three.

For co-op revenue, Minnesota ranks first, with $67.6 billion. Missouri is second at $21.4 billion, and Illinois is third at $14.1 billion, according to the release.

CHS Inc., a fuel, supply, grain and food cooperative based in Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, is the nation's largest cooperative, according to the rankings. It posted $43 billion in revenue in 2014. Rounding out the top three ag co-ops are Kansas City-based Dairy Farmers of America, with $18 billion in total revenue, and Land O'Lakes, headquartered in, St. Paul, Minnesota, with $15 billion in revenue, according to the release.

For a full list of the nation's Top 100 Ag Co-ops, visit:…




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