BLOOMINGTON, ILLINOIS and FINDLAY, OHIO, US — GROWMARK, Inc. and Legacy Farmers Cooperative announced on Aug. 19 that they are forming a joint venture to purchase and operate a grain facility near Defiance, Ohio.

They will form a new retail grain unit called Apex Grain Marketing, LLC, which will purchase the facility from Consolidated Grain and Barge Co. (CGB), listed in Sosland Publishing Company’s 2021 Grain & Milling Annual as having the fifth largest storage capacity in North America at 243.4 million bushels.

The facility is a fully automated 2.5-million-bushel upright storage capacity grain elevator and has 1.3-million-bushel pile capacity that loads 90 car CSX trains. Inbound dumping capacity is 40,000 bushels per hour, and load-out speed is 60,000 bushels per hour. The facility was built in 2013 and it sits on approximately 120 acres, providing room for expansion.

“Two strategic objectives identified by the GROWMARK Grain Division’s 2025 strategic plan are to enhance partnerships with our members and grow into new geographies,” said Matt Lurkins, executive director of the GROWMARK Grain Division. “Apex achieves both objectives. Northwest Ohio is a new geography for Apex, GROWMARK, and Legacy Farmers Cooperative to provide grain storage, handling, and marketing opportunities.”

Mark Sunderman, chief executive officer of Legacy Farmers Cooperative, added, “We are excited for this new chapter of growth with Legacy Farmers Cooperative and the opportunity for Apex to work cooperatively and make a positive impact for agriculture in Northwest Ohio.”

Legacy Farmers Cooperative and GROWMARK will both have investment in Apex Grain Marketing, LLC and Legacy Farmers Cooperative will provide management services to Apex. Apex will be governed by a board of directors consisting of both GROWMARK and Legacy Farmers Cooperative representatives.

The acquisition is expected to be finalized on Sept. 1.

GROWMARK, headquartered in Bloomington, Illinois, US, is an agricultural cooperative serving almost 400,000 customers across North America, providing agronomy, energy, facility engineering and construction, and logistics products and services, as well as grain marketing and risk management services.

Legacy Farmers Cooperative, headquartered in Findlay, Ohio, US, offers agronomy, agri-finance, precision agriculture, nutrient management, energy, feed, grain, and turf products and services through its locations across Northwest Ohio.