Cooperative spirit

CHS donates feed to farmers and ranchers impacted by wildfires

Ranchers surveying a field of cattle.

Oct 05, 2020
Oregon wildfire and smoke

CHS Payback & Equis feed will be distributed to farms most severely affected by recent wildfires in Oregon.

CHS Community Giving and CHS Animal Nutrition are partnering with Oregon State University (OSU) Extension to provide 50 tons of CHS Payback® and Equis® feed for farmers and ranchers impacted by the recent wildfires that have ravaged communities across Oregon in recent weeks. The feed, valued at approximately $25,000, will be transported to centralized distribution hubs across the state, then dispatched to farms most severely affected by the wildfires. 

“Our hearts go out to the many families and communities impacted during this unprecedented wildfire season,” says Jessie Headrick, director, CHS Community Giving. “We’re glad to partner with the CHS Animal Nutrition team and OSU Extension to ensure the farmers and ranchers most in need have our support as they recover from this devastation.” 

“Working together to lend a hand is what the CHS cooperative spirit value is all about,” adds Karl Thoene, vice president, CHS Animal Nutrition. “We hope the Payback and Equis feed donations will alleviate some of the recovery costs as these farmers and ranchers begin restoring their livelihoods.”  

According to Oregon Office of Emergency Management, one million acres have burned, 1,300 residences have been destroyed and thousands of community members have been forced to evacuate. Meanwhile, livestock have been displaced and are in need of care and resources.  

Sam Angima, assistant dean for outreach and engagement at OSU College of Agricultural Sciences, said OSU Extension continues to assess the most pressing needs. “Many families are struggling to make sense of what to do next. Especially impacted are farmers and ranchers who, besides losing their homes, also lost their livestock, feed and hay,” says Angima. “They are returning home completely devastated.”  

Troy Odvody, CHS plant manager at Harrisburg, Ore., is working on the frontlines facilitating the feed donations and reports that while the fires have eased due to recent weather, they are not yet fully contained. “The fires continue in some areas and the devastation is immense,” says Odvody. “Our support couldn’t come at a better time.” 

In addition to the feed donations, CHS Community Giving is working with several impacted member cooperatives in the Northwest to identify local needs as their farmer- and rancher-owners and communities work to rebuild in the aftermath of the wildfires.