Bonnie Larson and her husband Will, purchased their business, Werner Feed Efficiency Testing Center in Diagonal, Iowa, from her sister and brother-in-law in May of 2012. Werner Feed Efficiency Testing is a testing facility that individually measures how much each animal eats and compares that to how much the animal gains throughout the testing period. This data is then used to calculate the animal’s efficiency. More efficient animals require less feed to grow. This correlates to less money and less resources in result. Bonnie recognized the up and coming trend of feed efficiency and the desire people have to know more, and believed it was a worthwhile adventure for her and her husband, Will, to take.
After purchasing the business, Bonnie reached out to the South Central Iowa SBDC to get assistance in the financials of Werner Feed Efficiency. She originally went to a workshop to learn more about accounting, and afterwards starting talking to Brandi Shay to become more educated on how to properly manage the financials of her business. Bonnie said, “I cannot say enough good things about Brandi. She was a god-send. She provided every tool I needed, always treated me with respect, and truly cared about the outcome of my business.” She also received a loan from her bank and a beginning farming loan from the FSA.
Since Bonnie has worked with Brandi Shay, she has seen her family business expand and continue to grow. They are planning to expand their business more by adding on to their facility again this summer. Bonnie’s biggest triumphs have been understanding the financials after meeting with Brandi and all of the genetic progress they have already seen in feed efficiency. Because feed efficiency is such a new industry, Bonnie said that the most challenging aspect has been educating the cattle industry on the idea.
Werner Feed Efficiency Testing Center hosts field days for college and local school districts so the students can become educated on the idea and what they do. “There is a lot of negative stigma within the agriculture industry, so I hope that my business makes people remember that there are a lot of positive aspects and good people in the industry as well.”
For more information on Werner Feed Efficiency Testing Center, please visit their website at www.wernerfamilyangus.com/.