2001 Regional Winner

Rockbridge Farmer's Cooperative - Lexington, VA

To some, 33,000 acres may not sound like a lot. But imagine managing, sales, application, and other services for 33,000 acres of 3- and 5- and 10- acres fields in scenic but hilly western Virginia. That's the challenge facing location manager Jason Black and his team at Rockbridge Farmers Co-op just outside Lexington. For Black, stewardship is a matter both of environmental protection and sound business practice.

"Being a good steward just makes sense from a business standpoint," Black says.

All liquid products are stored under roof in a containment equal to 100 percent of storage capacity plus 24 hours of maximum expected rainfall, and all employees at the facility are certified custom applicators in the state. The small fields in the service area, along with the increasing development pressure nearly universal in agriculture, make Rockbridge extra vigilant regarding drift control.

"We use an excellent drift retardant," Black says, "but all our rigs have wind meters. If the wind gets over 5 or 6 miles per hour, we don't spray."