Getting Granular with Grain, A Visit with Tom Blackwell

Jan 27, 2023

When he was about 3 years old, Tom Blackwell decided he wanted to be a farmer. Except, he lived in the city and the extent of his agriculture background was carpet farming in the living room.

Sometimes it’s difficult to tell a 3-year-old no.

Tom with wife Morgan (FFA Advisor!) and pup Annabelle

Tom held on to that dream, and while he doesn’t farm full time today, he does work as an Associate Grain Merchandiser on Co-Alliance’s grain team.

Scircleville Grain Team

We’ve heard so many employees say over time that they couldn’t go home to farm, so joining the Co-Alliance team was the next best thing. We couldn’t agree more.

Today, Tom’s work in the grain department allows him to put his untraditional but skilled background to use. He’s part of a team that buys and stores grain from midwestern farmers. Then they analyze markets and opportunities to sell that grain to end-users.


Co-Alliances grain division handles 40 million bushels of grain annually. There are eleven grain locations, five of those with railroad access. Three are considered express loaders. Tom talks more about these logistics in our latest podcast.

In this conversation, Tom talks about changing markets, the value of hard freezes and best of all: the people.

Goodland Grain Team

If you ever met someone on the Co-Alliance grain team, you’ll notice they all have one redeeming quality: grit. These crews are extremely dedicated to the success of the local farmers as they welcome, store, and then load grain. Waiting for a Train is more than just a Jimmie Rodgers song. For these employees, it’s all in a day’s work.

Join us this week on Cultivated as we visit with Tom Blackwell, jack of all trades, master of none. We visit about his untraditional path to Co-Alliance, the work he does daily to ensure needs are met from time zones away and why the Co-Alliance grain team is one of the best in the market.



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