Tom's Take: The Paper Trail of a Grain Sale


Recently, we’ve had a few instances where a farmer has said something like the following: 

  • I responded to your bids text and said “sell my grain” last week – did you do that?
  • I left a voicemail for someone at Landus to sell my grain – did that get done?
  • I sent an e-mail back to the morning comments I receive from Landus to sell some grain for me and I haven’t seen it on my portal yet – can you look into it?

We generally ask questions like: 

  • who did you talk to?
  • when did you do that?

Inevitably, we find out that the message was not received on our side. Or, if it was, the person that heard or saw the message, made an assumption that someone else had already dealt with it. Like almost any form of communication, if the recipient doesn’t acknowledge the message, you should not assume that the message was delivered. 

So, let me be perfectly clear: To sell grain to Landus, you need to talk to a Landus employee. Without that vital part of the equation, please don’t assume that anything was done. We don’t buy grain via text, e-mail or voicemail. “IF” we receive the message, someone might contact you, and if so, at that point, we’ll use the current price at that time. We won’t honor a price from the night before, some day last week, or last month. We will use the current price. 

I know we live in an age of electronic communication, but we still need to speak to someone in order to buy or sell grain. That is where and when the contract happens. Along with that, when you receive paperwork either in the mail or via the portal, that is a “confirmation” of the contract. We ask that you sign that, so we all have a good paper trail. Just keep in mind, the contract was made verbally, either on the phone or in person. The paperwork confirms the agreement we both made.