April 5, 2021 – Ephrata, Washington. Augie Kooistra is celebrating 35 years in the agriculture industry. “It really does feel like a blur. 2020 was just as busy as 2019 and for that I feel fortunate,” says Augie.
Getting into ag started back in 1971 when Augie got out of the military and was asked to help out on an all night chicken loading operation. It required loading chickens by hand into boxes and then onto a truck. The driver said his relative was looking for someone in our county to sell silage inoculant. Augie said, “Yes”. At the time Augie thought selling sounded like a way better living than loading chickens at night, all night. And the rest they say is history.
Silage inoculants are additives that are used to manipulate and enhance fermentation in hay and corn silage to produce a more efficient result.
Augie’s day begins at 6am and he’s in bed by 11pm. Some would say “farmer’s hours”, as those are his clients. His products he sells has grown over the years and now includes corn seed for grain and silage. Dry hay inoculants, applicators, hay moisture monitors, silage inoculants and liquid applicators, hot water pressure washers, parts & repair, soap, acid and degreasers. He markets his products in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. He also sells the PowderMaster & the Lightning B line of agriculture products nationally. You’ll find Pat, his wife, busy in their home office keeping everything organized.
Augie’s says, “My favorite thing about agriculture is the diversity, the great people involved and being part of probably the most proactive farming area in the USA. Washington State is the highest yields in grain, silage corn, potatoes, onions, hay, etc. in the USA.”
Driving to Augie’s home and sales location you can’t help but notice the line of antique tractors flanking his driveway. “I don’t look at my work for Augie’s Ag Sales as work. I enjoy what I do and the long, busy days never bothered me. But, my wife said all work is not good and I needed a hobby. So, a couple years ago I bought a little Massey Harris Pony 1949 model for yard art. That went over ok. Then a little later a 2nd tractor. That raised some noise and then a 3rd tractor and that raised a lot of noise. Then a 4th tractor and by the 17th tractor she figured out what my “hobby” was. I told her it a good investment. I mostly focus on the 1940 to 1950s vintage with a tractor from each of the different manufacturers. So, I’ve got green, orange, red, yellow, gray, etc. in the yard.”
“I grew up on a dairy farm and almost all these tractors I have in the yard were in use somewhere on the farms in the neighborhood in Whatcom county and the Fraser Valley. We lived right on the Western, WA – Canadian border. So, when I look at each of these tractors they recall a farm family who had one and all the memories surrounding that family farm and individuals from the late 50s and 1960s.”
Augie also credit success to his strong faith and know he owes his success to God’s help and blessing. He is also working on a book project called “Baby Baptism, Obedience to a False Teaching,” it should be done and available soon.