An update from Mitch Altermatt, CEO/General Manager of United Farmers Coop
There is a lot of excitement unfolding at UFC, and we’re thrilled to share it with you. A substantial part of this excitement stems from our ability to give back to you, our member-owners. As we near the completion of our annual audit for the fiscal year ending on August 31, the board of directors has approved patronage and equity retirement payments. These disbursements will be made in the coming months.
When we consider what has already been distributed to our members over the past year and add what is to come in the next couple of months, it’s astonishing to realize that UFC member-owners will receive over $18 million in cash in less than two years.
In the past, UFC’s equity retirement policy allowed members to receive their payout at age 69, and then again at age 79 and annually thereafter. While this policy served UFC member-owners well, your board of directors chose to improve it by accelerating the payout process for future generations. UFC will continue to pay out existing retirement equity to those who meet the age requirements as part of the original policy for those 65 and older. Simultaneously, we are transitioning towards an age-based equity retirement policy.
For over 108 years, we’ve held the business and cooperative principles to high standards. Like any journey, there have been challenges along the way. Yet, the board of directors and our dedicated employees have always remained faithful in their commitment, with a clear vision of the potential that lies ahead, even in challenging times.
The agriculture business landscape is changing rapidly with no signs of slowing down. Our ability to adapt with the changing landscape is crucial for the sustainability and longevity of your cooperative. Recognizing this, your board of directors is committed to discovering and implementing new ways to validate the value of cooperative equity to member-owners for all generations. Looking ahead, our goal is to keep the equity retirement policy revolving within a ten-to-fifteen-year timeline.
Equity retirement is a key principle within the cooperative ecosystem, empowering member-owners to thrive in an ever-changing landscape. We appreciate the trust you place in us to operate your cooperative, and we are excited to provide this equity retirement payment to you!
The cooperative system continues to prove its relevance and effectiveness in today’s world!