ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, US — In an effort to help farmers and ranchers impacted by wildfires in Oregon, CHS Community Giving and CHS Animal Nutrition are partnering with Oregon State University (OSU) Extension to donate 50 tonnes of CHS Payback and Equis feed.

“Our hearts go out to the many families and communities impacted during this unprecedented wildfire season,” said Jessie Headrick, director of 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.”

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.

“Working together to lend a hand is what the CHS cooperative spirit value is all about,” said Karl Thoene, vice president of 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 the 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.

Troy Odvody, CHS plant manager at Harrisburg, Oregon, US, 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,” Odvody said. “Our support couldn’t come at a better time.”

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,” Angima said. “Especially impacted are farmers and ranchers who, besides losing their homes, also lost their livestock, feed and hay. They are returning home completely devastated.”