Midway Co-op has a rich and established history that dates back to 1907 when the framework was laid for Osborne County Farmers Union Cooperative Association – the first county unit cooperative in the state of Kansas.
It all started when a group of locals joined together at country schools. They wanted to find a way to pool their resources to enhance their buying and selling power. The co-op started out handling mostly coal, cream, produce and petroleum products. They have much to be proud of, because what started with a few thousand dollars in sales in 1908 has grown into Midway Co-op and sales surpassing $100 million. But even more important is the impression that we’ve had in serving our surrounding communities. We are the glue that binds everyone together, and today we are stronger than ever.
Local farmers start meeting to improve their selling and purchasing influence.
The Osborne County Farmers Union Cooperative Association is officially established when its charter is awarded on June 3.
The Portis district joins the association; an elevator is constructed six years later.
The first Osborne elevator is purchased. It’s torn down in 1915 and rebuilt in 1916, along with a new office.
The organization purchases the elevators in Bloomington and Downs. The Bloomington elevator is torn down and rebuilt the following year.
The group of local farmers that owns the Alton elevator votes to join Osborne County Farmers Union.
The elevators in Corinth and Forney are purchased from the Robinson Elevator Company.
A fire claims the Portis elevator and a new structure is built to replace it.
The association votes to purchase the elevators in Bellaire and Waldo.
The organization purchases the elevator in Luray. A bulk petroleum plant and produce station are added on the grounds.
The Lebanon district is added to the growing cooperative by merger of stock.
A bulk petroleum plant is added in Waldo along with a new frame elevator the following year.
Late 1940s through the 1950s
An immense construction program adds approximately 2 million bushels of storage capacity.
The Mankato elevator is added to the association’s portfolio.
A service station is acquired in Lebanon and a liquid fertilizer plant is installed.
The cooperative moves its general office into the Cunningham building in Osborne.
The Osborne Feed Mill is constructed.
The coop-owned grocery stores in Downs and Osborne are sold.
A fertilizer warehouse and anhydrous ammonia plant are added to the Luray location.
The Forney elevator is officially closed down. In Portis, the handling of produce is discontinued and the building is transformed into a service station.
Grain storage capacity grows by another 1.1 million bushels.
Osborne County Farmers Union Cooperative Association changes its name to Midway Co-op Association.
Early 1990s to 2007
Another 4 million bushels of storage facilities is added to the co-op’s storage, bringing its combined capacity to 7.5 million bushels.
The Burr Oak location is acquired from an independent operator.
The Bohm Grain Elevator facilities in Osborne and Corinth are acquired.
Grain facilities in Bellaire and Lebanon are purchased.
2008 to present
: More than 6 million bushels of grain storage are added across the co-op, increasing the Midway’s present combined capacity to nearly 14 million bushels.
Present part 1
Today, Midway Co-op is a full-service agricultural cooperative with 12 operating locations and three (Bloomington, Corinth and Waldo) seasonal locations. Midway’s total grain storage capacity exceeds 14 million bushels. In addition to the grain inventory, the elevators sell fertilizer, crop protection products, seed and feed. Custom application of fertilizers and crop protection products is also provided. Seed cleaning and treatment services are available at the Lebanon and Portis facilities.
Present part 2
All elevators had railroad service approximately 15 years ago, but now only five elevators are served by rail. Midway also has service stations in Lebanon, Luray, Mankato and Osborne. These stations provide a full range of mechanic services along with farm tire repairs, refined fuel and propane deliveries. The Alton and Bellaire elevator locations also provide refined fuel sales.
Present part 3
Midway Co-op is also a provider of Diversified Crop Insurance, which is located in the General Office. The Osborne Feed Mill manufactures its own feed label, Midway Golden Feeds. Its sales territory includes a large portion of north central and western Kansas.