Koch Agronomic Services is reporting a solid supply chain for the spring of 2020.
“On the production side, in advance of the pandemic, we were prepared for a busy spring season,” says Steve Coulter, senior vice president of Koch Agronomic Services.
Specifically about the events that have unfolded because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Coulter says “To date, we have not seen any delays for spring. This includes raw material sourcing, which we may have had some product intended for fall supply that had been slightly delayed, but we have that in country now and are poised for a strong fall as well.”
He also shares that so far trucking and rail have been very reliable, however, the future reliability is a bit unknown.
“We highly encourage retailers and farmers to place orders early. If you know you’ll need it, and you have space to store it, order it today,” he says. “Every location will be different, and a lot of our products are already in a distributor’s warehouse. But with trucking companies and people planning routes, people will optimize things. And the ability to run a truck for a small order might not be likely if distributors need to become protective of routes.”
He shares his corporate colleagues at Koch Fertilizer are also reporting normal production hours and no delays in product. Technology is to thank for the company being able to address new processes quickly.
Coulter says within the last year Koch Fertilizer rolled out a mobile app, called LoadView, that allows truck drivers to pre-check in Koch Fertilizer facilities and includes inspections status and load numbers. Now, they’ve implemented a policy that all drivers in the U.S. must use the app which eliminates face to face human interactions required for social distancing.
The Koch Agronomic Services team started making plans specifically related to the spread of COVID-19 in January. Coulter shares their colleagues in China and Singapore shared their experiences to help inform the plan in the U.S.
“Overall, I’m proud of our team. We’ve embraced the role of providing essential products to an essential industry,” he shares.