Local ag experts make a 'dynamic' team: Jerry Morberg, Michael Steeke start Dynamic Cropping Systems
It's really hard not to call these guys the 'dynamic duo.'
The tongue-in-cheek moniker would fit, given the pair's complementary skill sets and the name of their new business, Dynamic Cropping Systems.
They're Jerry Morberg and Michael Steeke, a couple of Perham area entrepreneurs who have recently partnered to take on a new agricultural venture.
Morberg owned and operated the ag sales business Perham Seed for the past few years, and Steeke, a Perham native, moved back to town about a year ago to start Smart Yield Data Consulting, a precision farming and mapping service. The two merged their talents to create Dynamic Cropping Systems this past June.
They share similar interests and business prowess within the ag industry, yet each has his own specific area of expertise. Morberg is an experienced and trusted ag salesman, while Steeke is a tech-savvy ag data expert.
Together, they say, they make a fitting team, one that can offer a broad array of beneficial products and services to their customers.
"Jerry's experience, with my vision of the technology, is how we set ourselves apart," said Steeke. "You've got the trust factor, with experience, but you've got the curiosity, too, with a younger grower who's more inept with technology. That appeals to both the younger and older generations of farmers."
"We complement each other really well," Morberg added, explaining that they decided to join forces soon after meeting. It didn't take them long to realize a partnership could be advantageous for themselves and their customers, and they began an effort to "put everything under one roof to make it more convenient."
That "roof" is Morberg's former Perham Seed site, located just south of Perham about a mile down Highway 108, off the Highway 78 turnoff. This spring, the Perham Seed signs out front will come down, and Dynamic Cropping Systems signs will go up. Improvements have already been made to the office building to accommodate the needs of the new business.
Dynamic Cropping Systems is, in simplest terms, an ag retailer. The company offers new and upcoming farming products, including seeds, chemicals, fertilizers and high-tech farming gear. It's not an equipment dealer, but it does offer some retrofit add-on parts that can bring older equipment into the modern age.
The simple descriptor of "ag retailer," though, doesn't paint the whole picture. Perhaps even more important than the list of goods the company carries, are the services it provides to ensure that those goods are being used by farmers in the best possible ways.
Utilizing the latest available data and technology, Morberg and Steeke work with their customers from the beginning to end of a growing season, spending a lot of time in the fields to conduct research and monitor crops.
"We do many of our own unique trials — that's one of our biggest selling points," Morberg said. "Anybody we do business with, we're in their fields. It's a very direct service. Any kind of face-to-face or direct contact you get with the customer...they like that."
By having aspects of both a seed company and a data company, Dynamic Cropping Systems is "able to utilize a lot of the research and data that we receive from farmers," Steeke said. "So we've got the data to back up our sales. We know what we're selling works, and we're proving it. We wouldn't sell anything we wouldn't use ourselves."
Their ultimate goal is to see farmers succeed, and to save them money.
This past season, as one example, Morberg and Steeke saved a customer an estimated $20 to $30 per acre by testing for nitrate levels in the soil. The farmer had planned to do a second nitrate application on his fields later in the season, as is standard practice, but the duo used a specialized tool to show that there was already enough residual nitrate from the first application; no more was needed.
Dynamic Cropping Systems also provides opportunities for education and discussion among area farmers, organizing occasional lunch meetings with guest speakers who talk about a variety of topics of interest. The next meeting will be held Thursday, Jan. 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Cactus in Perham. Speakers will be Carl Peterson, owner of Peterson Farm Seed, Josh Elsing, a soil fertility specialist with Midwestern BioAg, and Scott Strand, of NorthStar Commodity.
Dynamic Cropping Systems works with farmers within about a 50-mile radius of Perham.
Morberg grew up on a farm near Oslo, Minn., attended North Dakota State University, and then worked in the seed industry for a number of years. After he decided to go out on his own, he and his wife, Amy, moved their family to Perham, where they had already been spending most of their weekends.
Steeke, a 2009 Perham High School graduate, studied agronomy and ag business at North Dakota State University and then worked in agronomy and ag equipment sales before returning to Perham to start his own consulting company.
For more information on Dynamic Cropping Systems, visit the company's website, dcsyields.com, or Facebook page, or call 701-809-8358.