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Chatting with Riceland Co-op

 

 

December 2021, Customer Advisory Board Testimonial

“As we switched to Bushel, it was still like you’re driving the car. However, the Bushel car had all the bells and whistles that the old one didn’t,” said Bill Free, Director of Farmer Relations. 

We recently sat down with Riceland Co-Op’s Bill Free and Brian Smith, Manager of Software. Riceland Co-Op is a cooperative known as the world’s largest miller and marketer of rice. Riceland has 24 locations and is based out of Stuttgart, Arkansas. The company started working with Bushel in 2019, and currently utilizes Bushel Trade, Website and Mobile.

Riceland and Bushel brought new opportunities to one another. With Riceland coming on board, Bushel added rice as a newly supported commodity. Riceland considered a handful of different companies as possible partners to help improve their digital offering to customers, and Bushel stood out because of their knowledge of the agricultural industry as well as the tech industry.

 “They understood farming, which was helpful because we never find people who understand,” Smith said.

Pre-Bushel, Riceland struggled with keeping their website up to date and easy to use. As Bushel Mobile, Web and Trade were integrated, their struggles diminished. Riceland’s platforms are now regularly updated and continue to be easily navigable. All platforms get automatically updated simultaneously. This feature removes the tedious task of having to individually update platforms.

“With you guys it gives us the opportunity to be on a platform that is constantly updated. That takes the headache off of us,” said Smith as he talked about how well Bushel is about keeping their platforms up-to-date.

In addition to their website, Riceland had also struggled with mailing out contracts. 

“We were mailing a ton of stuff and return-mailing a ton of stuff. And with the postal service’s reliability, we may have to mail it twice. ” Free said. Now that Riceland has an up-to-date app with e-Sign capabilities to upload contracts into the app. Once uploaded, the customer is able to sign the contract anywhere, at any time through their app on a mobile device. 

“We had people driving 20 miles from their farm to sign things. It’s [Bushel eSign] pretty much eliminated all of that because everybody carries a phone with them, and most everybody can write their name on it.“

“The farmers really liked that they had an app where they could see all their information in one spot,” Free said.

Smith says his team has continued to be impressed by how easy it is for farmers to use. Ease of use which contributes to the positive response and successful adoption from Riceland’s growers.