Railroad access spurs cooperative mergers

Grain elevators throughout the state are merging to gain advantages of scale, according to The Journal Gazette. The 268 grain-storage companies operating in 2006 was a 16 percent drop from five years earlier, the Fort Wayne newspaper reported.

The elevators, many of which were started in the 1920s, are striving to gain better access to railroads and become large enough to compete with livestock farms, ethanol plants and farmers who increasingly are storing grain on farms.

Elevators remaining from the consolidation are boosting storage capacity. They had 444 million bushels last year, a 53 percent increase from 2001.

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