Sunrise Cooperative Facilities all Certified in 4R Nutrient Stewardship

The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program has announced that all four of Sunrise Cooperative Inc.’s agronomy branches, located in Attica, Ballville, Crestline and Norwalk, have been added to the growing list of nutrient service providers to achieve certified status. Sunrise is the first entity to have all of its locations certified in 4R Nutrient Stewardship.

The voluntary certification program is a concentrated effort by the agriculture industry to significantly reduce and prevent applied nutrients from running off fields, which has contributed to harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie, such as the one responsible for the shutdown of Toledo’s water supply in early August 2014.

Sunrise is a full-service cooperative fully owned by its 3,100 farmer-members. The company operates three grain terminals, four full service agronomy locations with an ammonia satellite, offers bagged Purina Animal Nutrition feeds, and has an energy division offering propane, liquid fuels and bulk oils. Its agronomy division features more than 25 Certified Crop Adviser Board-certified agronomists and a certified professional agronomist on staff.

“We at Sunrise, as well as our farmers, are good stewards and are knowledgeable about and committed to the issues with the environment,” said George Secor, Sunrise president and CEO. “Company-wide, we have people in place to assist our farmers with continued education and responsible management of their nutrients.”

The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program certifies that entities in the tri-state area that sell, apply or make recommendations on how fertilizers should be applied to crops are doing so in accordance with 4R Nutrient Stewardship principles – which refers to using the Right Source of Nutrients at the Right Rate and Right Time in the Right Place. Applicants must go through an audit and demonstrate they not only understand 4R principles, but also follow them.

“We want to show that we are doing our part by not over applying nutrients when they are not needed, said Jerry Miller, Sunrise’s vice president of agronomy. “We work closely with our growers to ensure that everyone is doing their part to protect the environment.”

More than 950,000 acres and 2,500 farm clients are now serviced by those who have received 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification.

“Sunrise’s employees worked very hard to ensure that its operations were following the 4R’s, and we congratulate them for their stewardship practices and success,” said Andrew Allman, executive director of the Nutrient Stewardship Council.

“By becoming 4R Certified, Sunrise Cooperative has proven its dedication to the long-term improvement of Lake Erie’s water quality,” said Carrie-Vollmer Sanders, Nutrient Stewardship Council chairwoman. “We are proud of all nutrient service providers that have begun the process of becoming 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certified.”

The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program is governed and guided by the Nutrient Stewardship Council, a diverse set of stakeholders from business, government, university and non-governmental sectors with a common goal of maintaining agricultural productivity while also improving the quality of Lake Erie and its contributing watersheds. The program is administered by the Ohio AgriBusiness Association. For more information, visit, email or call 614-326-7520 ext. 1.

MEDIA: Download high-resolution photos of each facility receiving their 4R certification signs by clicking on the facility name below.

  • Attica Facility
    • CUTLINE: (Front Row – L to R): Custom Applicator Tony Hill, Custom Applicator Jamey Kamann, Agronomy Operations Tim Temple, Operations Manager Dan Beal, Custom Applicator Billy Gayheart, Custom Applicator Floyd Penwell. (Back Row – L to R): Precision Farming Specialist Chris Goshe, Feed Warehouse Manager Jeff Zeiter, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Vince Willman, Warehouse Manager Marvin Stacklin, Custom Applicator Rob Nutter, Custom Applicator Randy Breyley, Agronomy Operations Allen Phenicie, Delivery Driver Tom Nagel, Delivery Driver Doug McClellan.
  • Ballville Facility
    • CUTLINE: (Front Row – L to R): Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Robert Brubaker, Customer Applicator Nick Siebert, Precision Farming Specialist Derek King, Custom Applicator Daniel Baker, Fertilizer Warehouse Manager Jon Yundt, Seed Treatment Specialist Aron Burmeister. (Back Row – L to R): Operations Manager Tim Giesige, Custom Applicator Ben Whitman, Custom Applicator Mike Burgess, Seed Warehouse Manager Mark Perry, Custom Applicator Mike Sanford, Chemical Warehouse Manager Danny Kimmet.
  • Crestline Facility
    • CUTLINE:  (Front Row – L to R): Agronomy Sales Consultant Trainee Zach Smith, Operations Manager LeeAnn Leeth, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Christina Howell, Agronomy Sales Consultant Trainee Heidi Blubaugh, Custom Applicator Erik Sobers, Custom Applicator Matt Scherer, Precision Farming Specialist Matt Lutz, Location Manager/CCA Steve Niese (Back Row – L to R): Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Brian Rhodes, Shop Manager Brian Rietschlin, Customer Applicator David Ehrman, Agronomy Sales Consultant Mike Schreck, Seed Warehouse Manager Steve Davis, Custom Applicator Brett Heinlen, Precision Farming Specialist Josh Snyder.
  • Norwalk Facility
    • CUTLINE:  (L to R): Location Manager Tony Myers, Fertilizer Warehouse Manager Josh Myers, Precision Farming Specialist/CCA Bryan Liskai, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Keith Deering, Precision Farming Specialist Stuart Smith, Office Manager Cyndi Myers, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Russell Culler, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Tom Ruffing, Agronomy Sales Consultant/CCA Roger Stang, Agronomy Sales Consultant Tyler Bouy, Agronomy Sales Consultant Trainee Ashley Knipp, Seed Warehouse Manager Daryl Pena, Custom Applicator Matt Ott, Custom Applicator Kevin Siesel.