Agronomy

One Stop Shop

We understand the profitable crop production involves much more than buying the right seed or fertilizer. Centra Sota Cooperative offers growers a fully integrated menu of products and services. In fact, we were one of the first agronomy suppliers in the region to do so, and we are continuing to add products and services that will help our growers become more successful.

We provide a variety of solutions ranging from financing options and revenue management to grain marketing and crop planning services. Our highly skilled crop advisors are available to assist you in any or all of these areas to help your farming operation be as profitable as possible.

The Centra Sota Difference

Centra Sota understands that one size does not fit all in farming. Our local and regional professional agronomists work side-by-side with growers. This boots-on-the-ground approach is essential when making recommendations on what products, applications, and techniques will be the most effective – and most profitable – for each unique situation. We offer comprehensive crop planning to recommend the right fit, not just for each farm, but for each acre.

We Offer

  • State-of-the-art precision in our agriculture techniques, tools, equipment, and application.
  • Progressive thinking and ideas to help your operation achieve your goals.
  • Products from dozen of major companies to provide leading technology, genetics, and choices.
  • Learning opportunities for you at our Answer Plot Knowledge Meetings.
  • Knowledgeable agronomists available to answer your tough questions.
  • Thorough crop scouting to capitalize on your crop’s potential.
  • Biomass imagery assessments.

SERVICES

Yield Quest 

Yield Quest is Centra Sota's custom Precision Ag Program. When it comes to decisions about your operation, quality data is everything and we are the partner in helping the grower manage and make decision from all of the data. This turn-key program provides critical information about your operation, along with specific solutions to improve productivity and efficiency. Between our agronomic expertise, equipment optimization and precision technologies, we have all your agronomic needs covered. 
 

Answer Plot Technology Tours

Three tours are held each year at our Santiago Answer Plot. Watch our home page and your mail box for dates and time.

Precision Planting System

Fine-tune your planter units by using our Precision Planting Calibration System. Mount your John Deere or Kinze planter units on the MeterMax calibration stand to determine the optimum settings. This system helps you determine your optimum ground speed, improves profits, and maximizes your planter investment to help every kernel develop to that perfect ear.
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Centra Sota Agronomy Team


    Abby Sawatzke

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Abby Sawatzke

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    320-286-6142
    asawatzke@centrasota.com

    Abby grew up on a dairy farm in Waverly, MN. While growing up, Abby was involved in volleyball, 4-H and FFA. Her passion for the agronomy industry stems from working on the farm and checking the fields with her father.

    After high school, Abby attended the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities where she majored in Agricultural Industries and Marketing with an emphasis on Crops and Soils. After graduating from the Twin Cities in 2012, Abby became an independent seed salesman. After deciding to return to college for her second undergrad, this time in Agronomy Sciences, Abby attended the University of Minnesota- Crookston. Abby recently graduate in 2015 and is currently working towards obtaining her Master’s Degree in Agronomy from Iowa State University.

    Abby began working with Centra Sota as a Sales and Marketing intern in the summer of 2015. Recently, Abby was added to the full time roster as a Crop Advisor in Cokato, MN. Abby is most excited about being back out in the fields and interacting with growers. Outside of work, Abby enjoys playing volleyball and gardening. 


    Adam Johnson

    Master Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago

    Adam Johnson

    Master Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago
    763-662-2285
    ajohnson@centrasota.com

    I grew up on a small farm east of Foley where we raised veal calves. Later we switched to Holstein steers and hay. After high school I spent three summers walking fields working with a crop consultant evaluating stands, soil sampling and scouting for weeds, insects and crop disease. 

    I received a bachelor's degree in Crop and Soil Science from the University of Minnesota in St. Paul and a master's degree in Weed Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I also had two six-month internships with American Cyanamid chemical company during college. After graduate school, I went to work for a private contract researcher in Wisconsin, and I later joined Centra Sota Cooperative in December of 2003.

    I enjoy the seasonality of farming, and the fact that the tasks needed to be done change with the seasons. I like walking fields and I enjoy working with plants. If I wasn't here I would probably be teaching. 

    I married my wife, Holly, on November 2, 2002. She grew up on a dairy farm between Lester Prairie and Winsted. We have two children, Hannah and Zachary. My hobbies include fishing, hunting, weightlifting, and gardening (especially giant pumpkins!).


    Andrew Lambert

    Crop Advisor
    Location: St. Martin

    Andrew Lambert

    Crop Advisor
    Location: St. Martin
    320-548-3245
    alambert@centrasota.com

    I grew up picking up rocks and milking cows on our family farm just west of Buffalo, MN.  I graduated from North Dakota State College of Science with my Associate’s degree in Crop Production Technology and then finished my college education at the University of Minnesota Crookston with a Bachelor’s degree in Crop Production.

    While in school I completed 3 internships that helped shape my career. In 2013 I interned with the WinField Master Agronomy Advisor Intern Program, in 2014 with WinField Ag Technology Specialist Intern Program and in 2015 with Centra Sota as an Agronomy Sales and Marketing Intern. I graduated in December 2016 and started fulltime as a Crop Advisor with Centra Sota in January 2016.

    I credit my absolute enthusiasm of commercial agriculture to both growing up on a farm and the experiences I have had since working in this field.

    Through my experience of working with farmers I feel things have definitely changed from 20 years ago when Roundup ready corn first entered the market (I was 6 and people like to remind me of that). I feel as though we have entered a new era of farming full of data and insight coming to us in forms we have never seen before. I find it very rewarding bringing this information to farmers to help make the best decisions possible to overcome obstacles and meet their operations goals. I am very grateful to be working with Centra Sota who prides itself on being at the leading edge of crop production practices.

    In my off time I enjoy being outside hunting, fishing and riding anything with a motor.

    My main goal in this position is to bring the best insight we have to offer to a grower to make their operation more successful in whatever way success means to them. 


    Clem Crowley

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Clem Crowley

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    320-286-6142
    ccrowley@centrasota.com

    Growing up on a small dairy farm in Slayton, Minnesota, Clem began learning all aspects of farming at a very young age. It was hard work, but the experience also played an important role in shaping his future. Clem realized early on that he wanted to work with growers to earn their trust and create a business relationship.

    For me, being an agronomist is more than selling products; it's selling the right products to grow the most profitable crop for the grower.

    Clem earned a two-year Ag Business degree from Willmar Technical College. That degree was the start of a 30-year career in the agronomy business. Over the years, he has worked at five different fertilizer plants. For Clem, these were more than just jobs. He was gaining knowledge and gathering the best ideas on how to operate a plant. He purchased his own plant in January 1988. Clem and his wife Deb owned the plant for 20 years before selling to Centra Sota in December 2008. Clem agreed to stay on and continue to work as a sales agronomist for Centra Sota. 

    Today, Clem is continuing his pattern of lifelong learning to gather the best ideas and best practices. As a Certified Crop Advisor, Clem continues attending seminars to stay up-to-date on the newest technology for farming to better serve Minnesota growers.


    Doni Martin

    Lead Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago

    Doni Martin

    Lead Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago
    763-662-2285
    dmartin@centrasota.com

    Doni was born in St. Cloud and grew up on a farm north of Sartell. He has been involved with agriculture for roughly 50 years, nearly all his life. He has had the opportunity to be around livestock and a variety of crops. 

    To me it is really exciting to be part of the agricultural world and working together with producers to find solutions for their challenges and concerns.

    Growing up on the farm taught Doni a lot of life lessons. It is where he learned the importance of family and friends working together to get crops in and harvested. The experience also gave him a firsthand view of the concerns and issues that all farmers face on a daily basis. He uses that knowledge to go out and help today's producers with the concerns they have in today's market.

    Doni has lived in central Minnesota all of his life. He now lives south of Foley with his wife Sharon, daughter Katrina and labs Zeus and Zena. In his spare time, he works his 1-acre vegetable garden where he grows cucumbers, as well as 400 to 600 tomato plants and another 400 to 600 pepper plants. Like any good grower, Doni is continuing to build his “small” garden slowly with a keen focus on getting the most out of production. In 2011 he and his family produced 8,000 pounds of tomatoes that they canned and shared.


    Isaac Anderson

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago

    Isaac Anderson

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago
    763-662-2285
    ianderson@centrasota.com

    Isaac grew up in Maple Grove, MN. He grew up with an enthusiasm for the outdoors and outdoor recreation including hunting and fishing. His passion for the outdoors, and a desire to learn more about production agriculture brought him to North Dakota State University, in Fargo ND. Isaac graduated from NDSU in May of 2015 with a degree in Agricultural Economics. 

    It is very rewarding to be a part of a coop that is so forward thinking in finding new ways to help growers.

    At NDSU, Isaac was a member of the Ag Business club and the student chapter of the National AgriMarketing Association, while also working as a student recruiter on campus for Land O'Lakes. 

    Isaac spent the summer of 2014 with the Agronomists at our Santiago location. He credits much of his passion for agronomy to this experience and the dedication he saw toward customer service. Isaac spent the summer after graduation working for WinField on research trials in Southern MN. Isaac joined the Centra Sota team again at the Santiago location in September of 2015. 


    Isaac Popp

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Little Falls

    Isaac Popp

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Little Falls
    320-632-9310

    I grew up dairy farming here in central Minnesota on multiple neighbors farms along with my dad’s 600 cow dairy early on in life. After graduating high school, I completed my Associated degree in Agriculture Business at Ridgewater College in Willmar, MN and my Bachelors degree in Agriculture Science at South Dakota State University in Brookings, SD.

    During my college career I completed three internships. In 2013 I interned as a Sales and Marketing Intern for Mycogen Seeds in South Western Minnesota. In 2014 I was a sales intern/agronomy consultant for an independent retailer in Pipestone, MN. Finally, in 2015 I interned for a seed brokerage firm in Olivia Minnesota.

    In my spare time, I enjoy doing yard work, helping dad on the farm and spending time with my fiancé.

    I am happy to be a part of the Centra Sota team and excited to help farmers will all of their crop needs.  


    Jack Reese

    Little Falls Agronomy Manager
    Location: Little Falls

    Jack Reese

    Little Falls Agronomy Manager
    Location: Little Falls
    320-632-9310
    jreese@centrasota.com

    Jack was born and raised on a small farm in southwestern Minnesota. After receiving a two-year degree in business from Willmar Community College, he returned to the family farm and eventually took over running the operation. Jack continued to farm for 20 years, raising corn and soybeans along with hogs and some calves.

    Since having run my own farm, I feel I have a great understanding of the challenges farmers face. With this being a great time to be involved in agriculture I look forward to helping our customers get the most of every dollar they spend with us.

    He joined Centra Sota in 2007 and his farming experience has made him an important part of the Centra Sota team. He doesn't “shoot from the hip” to give growers vague answers to their questions. If he doesn't know the answer, he can go to the many resources and knowledgeable people that Centra Sota has to get the information that growers want and need today.


    Jason Klein

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins

    Jason Klein

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins
    320-764-9635
    jklein@centrasota.com

    My name is Jason Klein! I live in Watkins with my wife and our three girls. I had the opportunity to work on some farms when I was younger, and that type of work caught my eye. I enjoyed working outdoors, and I thought farming was something that I wanted to do at some time in my life. 

    My goal is to build long-term relationships with growers, and to use any and all of the resources I have at Centra Sota to make sure that growers are getting the information and advice they need to make their operations successful and profitable.

    My dream came true in April 2006 when I got a job at Centra Sota as a driver/applicator. For the three years that I worked as an applicator I was fortunate to meet many different growers and see first-hand how they made their operations work. In the fall of 2009, I joined the Centra Sota sales team. I enjoy meeting growers and getting to know their businesses. 
     


    Jim Korman

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins

    Jim Korman

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins
    320-764-9635
    jkorman@centrasota.com

    Jim's introduction to farming started at an early age. In fact, his family moved to a farm in Marty, Minnesota when he was just four months old - the same farm that Jim still works today. Jim has been farming since 1973. The agriculture industry has certainly changed a lot since then, but the experience Jim has gained has helped him to relate to his customers, because he has walked in their shoes and faced the same risks, challenges and decisions.

    This is an exciting time to be working with Centra Sota Co-op patrons. With the enhanced marketing and advertising by Winfield Solutions, plus new tools such as the R7 analysis program, opportunities to better serve our members are greater than ever before.

    Jim has been working at Centra Sota since 1995 on a seasonal basis. In August 2012 he joined the team as a full-time sales representative. He continues to work about 60 acres, which allows him to test the same products he sells. He is an important part of the Centra Sota team working with growers to deliver real solutions for today and tomorrow.
     


    Korey Werk

    Master Agronomy Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Korey Werk

    Master Agronomy Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    320-510-4306
    krwerk@landolakes.com

    Korey comes to the Centra Sota team as a Master Agronomy Advisor through a partnered venture with Winfield Solutions. Korey brings vast experience in the precision agriculture arena, and he is committed to staying on top of the rapidly growing technology in our field. Korey has experience in a research setting, ag retail and on-farm experience. Combined, his experience brings a unique perspective to the job and ensures Korey's intentions are sound. His main focus is to work with the top 30 growers in central Minnesota. He is committed to showing growers the latest solutions to move their operations forward and stay ahead of the curve.

    Today's technology gives us the ability to validate our recommendation and show true return on investment.

    Korey brings a determination to do his best and perform at the highest level in every aspect of his life? from commitment to his family and his career to his favorite hobby of fishing. Whether he is practicing his cast, working in the yard, or being a devoted husband and father, his motivation is not derived from winning or impressing anyone. For Korey, it is all about rising to the challenge and knowing at the end of each day that he has done his absolute best for his customer, himself and his family.

    When it comes to your operation you want the best advice possible. Korey Werk and the team at Centra Sota are determined to deliver just that - superior agronomic knowledge and guidance, backed with the country's leading agriculture dataset, Winfield Solutions Answer Plots.


    Mark Geislinger

    Professional Crop Advisor / Location Manager
    Location: Watkins

    Mark Geislinger

    Professional Crop Advisor / Location Manager
    Location: Watkins
    320-764-9635
    mgeislinger@centrasota.com

    Growers in the Watkins area probably don't need much of an introduction to Mark. He grew up on a farm about a mile outside of Watkins. Aside from a short period going to school and working in St. Cloud, he has spent most of his life either farming or working with local farmers. It is that experience that has made him an important part of the Centra Sota team.

    I really enjoy the job that I do. I am out in the country and still farming every day with my customers. I enjoy being able to jump on a tractor or in a pick-up to go look at fields with farmers to help in any way that I can.

    After Mark got married in 1987, he worked the family farm raising hogs and milk cows alongside his dad. This helped Mark gain a true understanding of the issues that growers face - what it takes to put a crop in the ground, take it out, and do so profitably given the current commodity prices.

    Although Mark rents out most of the land at the family farm these days, he still keeps his hands in farming with some pigs and some steers. He lives in Watkins with his wife, of 25 years, and two children. Mark also recently celebrated a 25-year milestone with the Watkins Volunteer Fire Department, where he currently serves as the safety officer.


    Mark Lambert

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Mark Lambert

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    320-286-6142
    marklambert@centrasota.com

    Mark grew up on a dairy farm just west of Buffalo, Minnesota. He has worked for Centra Sota for 30+ years. He is an important part of the Centra Sota team. Mark has a strong sense of integrity, and he believes it is important to always be 100 percent honest and above board. Over his many years in the ag industry, Mark has forged strong relationships with growers and he is continuing to work to bring them real solutions that they can use today and tomorrow.

    I have always thought the agriculture industry was very interesting. It's not repetitious. You're doing different things every day. I enjoy working with growers and I enjoy the sense of accomplishment in helping growers find solutions.

    Mark lives on a small hobby farm west of Buffalo with his wife and two daughters. In his spare time, he enjoys cheering on his daughters at their sporting events. He also is an avid hunter, and he enjoys hunting deer, pheasant and coyote.


    Matt Brennan

    Lead Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Matt Brennan

    Lead Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    320-286-6142
    mbrennan@centrasota.com

    Mark grew up on a dairy farm just west of Buffalo, Minnesota. He has worked for Centra Sota for 30+ years. He is an important part of the Centra Sota team. Mark has a strong sense of integrity, and he believes it is important to always be 100 percent honest and above board. Over his many years in the ag industry, Mark has forged strong relationships with growers and he is continuing to work to bring them real solutions that they can use today and tomorrow.

    I have always thought the agriculture industry was very interesting. It's not repetitious. You're doing different things every day. I enjoy working with growers and I enjoy the sense of accomplishment in helping growers find solutions.

    Mark lives on a small hobby farm west of Buffalo with his wife and two daughters. In his spare time, he enjoys cheering on his daughters at their sporting events. He also is an avid hunter, and he enjoys hunting deer, pheasant and coyote.


    Matt Mesenbrink

    Master Agronomy Advisor
    Locations: Santiago, St. Martin & Little Falls

    Matt Mesenbrink

    Master Agronomy Advisor
    Locations: Santiago, St. Martin & Little Falls
    320-583-3290
    mjmesenbrink@landolakes.com


    Pat Breth

    Crop Advisor
    Location: St. Martin

    Pat Breth

    Crop Advisor
    Location: St. Martin
    320-548-3245
    pbreth@centrasota.com

    Pat Breth is an important part of Centra Sota Cooperative's team of experts. The values and work ethic of farm families were instilled in him at a young age. Although Pat was not raised on a farm, he spent many summers growing up working on the farms of relatives. His farm chores ranged from picking rocks and baling hay to milking cows. Pat discovered early on that he enjoyed being outdoors and working hard. 

    The most rewarding part of the job is getting positive feedback from the growers on a job well done.

    Pat will be the first to tell you that he is from the “school of life” as he has no formal education in agriculture. Instead, he was schooled in Minnesota farm fields with hands-on experience spraying, spreading fertilizer, crop scouting and making sound agronomic recommendations. Pat has built relationships of trust with you, the growers, over his many years in the industry. He has come to know what you want and what you need to succeed in your farming operation. 

    In over 30 years in the agronomy business, Pat has seen many changes in the agricultural industry, and he has adapted to meet the rapidly changing needs of his customers. He is proud to be part of a proactive cooperative. Centra Sota is poised for the future with a vast array of resources, including a great team of experts that specialize in agronomy, energy and feed. 
     


    Peter Schindler

    Professional Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins

    Peter Schindler

    Professional Crop Advisor
    Location: Watkins
    320-764-9635
    pschindler@centrasota.com

    As a kid growing up in the country, I had agriculture all around me. I began helping out our farming neighbors at the age of 12 with jobs ranging from baling hay and milking cows to moving gun pivots and even working in hog barns. All of these jobs proved to be a great experience for me. 

    After high school graduation I spent about two years in St. Cloud managing a pizza store. That is all the time that I needed to realize that I wanted to get back into agriculture. In 1995, I accepted a job at Terra International as a custom applicator. At that time, GPS was in the early days of being introduced into the ag market, and I was responsible for getting it up and working. As someone who loves technology, it was fun learning the system and showing the new technology to growers.

    Due to a series of mergers & acquisitions, I officially joined the Centra Sota team in 2000. Watching all of the changes that have taken place in the last couple decades, I am excited to see what innovations the coming years will bring. I can't wait to be a part of all the new technologies and problem solving solutions that farmers are going to encounter in this next era of agriculture. 


    Rachael Dahlman

    Seed and Agronomy Advisor
    Locations: All

    Rachael Dahlman

    Seed and Agronomy Advisor
    Locations: All
    763-662-2285
    redahlman@landolakes.com

    Rachael hails from a seed corn and soybean operation north of Cokato. Growing up, she was an avid detasseler, raised sheep, and was active in both FFA and 4-H. Her passion for agriculture and strong work ethic are a result of the responsibilities instilled by growing up on a family farm. 

    I’m dedicated to learning and helping farmers make informed decisions for their operations.

    Rachael graduated from South Dakota State University with a degree in Agriculture and Resource Economics in May of 2012. She credits her enthusiasm for agronomy to her internship with fellow agronomist, Tyson Kaldenberg. "Tyson was very patient with me and took a vested interest in making my internship worthwhile." She had two agronomy internships while in college.

    After graduation, Rachael took a position with WinField as an associate. She spent one year in Western Wisconsin before moving back to join the Centra Sota team. She is excited about returning home and getting the opportunity to work alongside some of the best mentors in the industry. 


    Steve Scherbing

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago

    Steve Scherbing

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Santiago
    763-662-2285
    sscherbing@centrasota.com

    Steve grew up on a family farm near Foley, MN. During his younger years, he worked alongside his father and took great pride in knowing they were producers that many people counted on. Later, he took over the farm which he then operated for 15 years. The experiences he encountered on the farm on a daily basis, have given him a better understanding of what current growers are dealing with today and the challenges they face. Being a grower of both crop and beef cattle, with 30 years of hands-on experience, he looks forward to doing what is right for each individual grower and is proud to put Centra Sota's name behind the experienced decisions he helps growers make.

    I am proud to put the Centra Sota name behind the experienced decisions I help growers make.

    Steve has been employed with Centra Sota for the past 5 years. He started out as an applicator and moved into sales in June of 2013. Having been an applicator, he has been able to build many strong relationships with the local area growers. 

    Steve is married to his wife, Christine and together share four children together: Tailor, Brianna, Emma and son, Andrew. His hobbies are farming, hunting and working on small engines in his spare time. 


    Tim Zander

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato

    Tim Zander

    Crop Advisor
    Location: Cokato
    763-670-6372
    tizander@centrasota.com

    Tim was born and raised in Howard Lake, MN. Tim began learning about agriculture at a very young age from his father who works for Munson Lakes Nutrition. 

    After high-school, Tim went on to attend Minnesota State University of Moorehead where he studied business administration with an emphasis on management. While in college Tim played football for the MSUM Dragons. 

    I want to bring value to producers by helping them meet their goals, improve profitability, and become a trusted advisor.

    Tim's career with Centra Sota Cooperative began as an operations employee in 2011. In 2013, he was promoted and became the Seed & Chemical Warehouse Manager in Cokato and most recently joined the Crop Advising team in the spring of 2015. Tim is looking forward to his new career in sales with Centra Sota and believes this is where he will bring the most value to both our customers and our cooperative. Outside of work Tim enjoys sports and competition. 


    Tyson Kaldenberg

    Agronomy Sales & Marketing Manager
    Location: All

    Tyson Kaldenberg

    Agronomy Sales & Marketing Manager
    Location: All
    320-286-6142
    tkaldenberg@centrasota.com

    Tyson has more than 10 years of experience in the agriculture industry, and he is an important part of the Centra Sota team. He grew up on a family farm in South-Central Iowa, and he later went on to earn an agronomy degree from Iowa State University. He made the move to Minnesota when his wife accepted a new job, and he has been working for Centra Sota since 2004.

    Growing up on the farm, you really understand what customers are going through and what the business process is like.

    Tyson draws from that solid foundation of experience and education when working with growers. He also strives to stay current on the latest trends in agriculture in order to bring the newest technologies to his customers. Before Tyson makes any recommendation to a customer, he envisions himself in their position and considers how the decision will impact the customer's bottom line.

Agronomy Locations

 
Agronomy, Feed & Grain, Store
119 West Elm Avenue
Upsala, MN 56384
320-573-2186
Little Falls Agronomy
Directions
Agronomy
13146 Haven Rd
Little Falls, MN 56345
320-632-9310
Toll-Free: 800-450-3631
Agronomy
190 Jackson Avenue Southwest
Cokato, MN 55321
320-286-6142
Toll-Free: 877-525-3734
Agronomy, Energy, Feed
111 Maine St
St. Martin, MN 55376
320-548-3245
Toll-Free: 800-447-1045
Agronomy, Energy
2168 165th Avenue
Santiago, MN 55377
763-662-2285
Toll-Free: 800-606-2285
Agronomy, Energy
500 4th Street North
Watkins, MN 55389
320-764-9635
Toll-Free: 800-669-9635