Agricultural Advancements Improve Efficiency

Wednesday, May 04 at 06:50 AM
Category: Business Banking

My grandpa Alvin was a full-time farmer and saw a lot of change during his 99 years. We loved to listen to his stories about riding to school on horseback and then using the same horses to pull a binder and wagons full of wheat shocks during summer harvest. Old family pictures document the evolution from threshing machines to pull-type combines and then self-propelled combines. Many farm families likely have similar albums, documenting the advancement in technology and sharing the pride taken each time an advance was made.

I started farming in 1994, just a little before the Round-Up Revolution. My first farm needed quite a bit of care to get it back into production. The north half had been packed by cattle hooves year round and the southern half had been abandoned for a decade or so and was filled with tree sprouts ranging in size from the tiniest sapling to eight inches in diameter. Needless to say, I spent a lot of time with log chains pulling trees on the south half so we could get ready to plow, which we did. My brother and I each pulled a plow … one of us ran four 16” moldboards while the other pulled five 18” moldboards. That was the best way to break that farm out of grass and into grain production at that time.
What took place during the next 12 months truly revolutionized crop production since. Equipment, chemical and seed technology advanced to the point that no-till farming became an important production practice not only in the Ozarks, but around the globe. In fact, my brother purchased a farm a couple of miles away from mine in 1996 and on much of it, we sprayed the grass and weeds and no-tilled his first crops into the sod. Obviously, it took an upgrade in planting equipment, but it sure saved us a lot of time and diesel fuel compared to how we prepared my farm for the first planting.
Since that time, no-till has become a standard practice on many farms, saving labor, fuel and especially top-soil.

Another advancement during my farming career has been the evolution of making hay. As a little boy, the coolest group of guys in my area were the teenagers my father hired on as a hay crew. They were tough, hay hauling, football playing guys who always had funny stories that made little guys laugh! By the time I reached my teenage years, the square baler remained king at our farm, but automated bale wagons that allowed one man to load and stack, had displaced the hay crew. Several years later, we turned to big round bales like many others. If I wanted to move a ton of hay back then, I did it about 75 pounds at a time (the average weight of a square bale) for about 26 times, with both hands and my back. Today, I sit in an air conditioned cab tractor, sipping my coffee, listening to the National Weather Service on the radio and literally move a lever about the size of an ink pen to move 2000 pounds of hay effortlessly.
In the realm of livestock production which southwest Missouri is best known for, the efficiency of producing meat has never been greater. Advancements in genetics and nutrition has allowed us get one pound of grain for every six pounds of feed today, verses one pound for every ten pounds in the 1950s. What I’m most excited about is what good scientific research has told us about the genome of each species. In fact, with a simple blood or hair sample, modern labs can certify parentage of my cattle and tell me which animals will most likely grade choice or prime! I rest assured other species are on the same track.  
Electronic technology that has brought us global positioning, variable rate fertilizer spreaders, and now, drones, will continue to revolutionize farm production. I use my smart phone to monitor markets, compare fertilizer prices, gather weather information and even determine what weeds are lurking in my soybeans.
Grandpa Alvin’s stories included such events as receiving the family’s first tractor with rubber tires, the day the Rural Electric Coop installed electricity for the first time and many other advancements. He certainly witnessed a lot of change during his life and it was awesome watching his great-grandsons teach him how to use an iPad shortly before he passed.   

As much change as we’ve seen in the past 70 years, and especially the past couple of decades, the advancements yet to come will likely dwarf those of the past. I’m excited about what the future of agriculture has in store! I’m sure we’ll all adapt and be grateful for the new things to come!
Tags: Agricultural Business, Arvest Biz, Business Banking

Friday Financial Forum May 6 in Bartlesville, Okla.

Tuesday, May 03 at 05:10 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

Join us Friday, May 6 at 9:45 a.m. for our Friday Financial Forum. We will meet at the Friday Forum Room at Arvest's East Side Branch, located at 4225 S.E. Adams Rd. in Bartlesville, Okla.*

We will begin at 9:45 a.m. with a performance by one of the vocalists from the upcoming May 7 Motown’s Greatest Hits concert presented by the Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra

Our featured speaker is Les Gilliam, 2010 Inductee to the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame and designated official “Oklahoma Balladeer” by the Oklahoma State Legislature. As a singer, songwriter, and recording artist, Les has received some of the most prestigious awards in Western Music-the coveted “Wrangler Award” from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, the Oklahoma Governor’s Arts Award and the Academy of Western Artists Award for Western Swing Song of the Year.  

Les’ concerts of cowboy, western swing, country and gospel music include fascinating stories about the songs and the artists who performed them. Gilliam is well known for including fun activities for the audience. His original songs and humorous material add a touch of nostalgia and good ole fashion patriotism.  

If you have any questions or would like to add someone to the email invitation list, please contact Billie Roane at (918) 337-4358. We look forward to seeing you there!

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: Bartlesville, Community Support, Oklahoma

Arvest’s Hunger Initiative Provides 522,681 Meals to Date

Monday, May 02 at 09:00 AM
Category: Arvest News

 We're over halfway to our goal of raising 1 Million Meals for the local hungry by May 28.

On April 4, Arvest Bank announced the beginning of its sixth annual 1 Million Meals campaign, which challenges bank associates, customers and community members to fight hunger in the more than 120 communities the bank serves by providing at least one million meals to those in need. The bank announced April 27 that the campaign has exceeded 500,000 meals, or halfway to its goal.

Arvest branches throughout Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma have been participating in this initiative by collecting nonperishable food items and monetary donations. These efforts will continue through May 28, with the intention of reaching one million meals donated to the local communities Arvest serves in time for summer, when many school children do not have access to meals they ordinarily receive at school and when many of our food partners face fundraising challenges.

Every dollar raised through 1 Million Meals provides the equivalent of five meals for local, hungry families. Arvest has partnered with more than 65 organizations that will receive all of the nonperishable food and monetary donations made through May 28.

Anyone interested in supporting the 1 Million Meals campaign can drop off nonperishable food items or monetary donations at any local Arvest branch or calling (866) 952-9523 to contribute.

For more information about 1 Million Meals, visit

Tags: 1 Million Meals, Arkansas, Charitable Giving, Community Support, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma

New Branch Opens in Downtown Oklahoma City

Monday, May 02 at 07:25 AM
Category: Arvest Community News

We’re excited to announce the opening of our new branch located in downtown Oklahoma City. After a search for the perfect location, the branch opened its doors April 18 at 115 Park Ave. 

We believe this spot will better serve people downtown and be another convenient location where current and new Arvest customers can bank. There are over 25 Arvest branches in Oklahoma City in order to provide opportune locations for customers. 

“We’re excited about the new location,” said Brenda Gauntt, SVP marketing manager. “We like being in the center of Oklahoma City and know it will provide more visibility for the bank!”

The 2,476-square-foot building is a great size for the new branch. According to Oklahoma County records, the building was constructed in 1920. A historic building, there are interior brick walls that have been there for over 100 years! 

Sammetra Christmon, SVP branch administrator, and Tracy Hamrick, branch manager, alongside their team, are looking forward to serving customers with the quality service that is expected at Arvest.

We invite you to visit our new location and join us for an open house on May 5, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. We hope you will drop by, meet our friendly staff and let us assist you!

Tags: Oklahoma, Oklahoma City

Arvest Bank Tops J.D. Power Satisfaction Study

Friday, April 29 at 08:00 AM
Category: Arvest News

Arvest recognized as best in class by J.D. Power for seventh consecutive year in the Southwest Region.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arvest Bank again ranks highest among its peers in satisfaction with retail banking in the Southwest Region. That’s according to the J.D. Power 2016 Retail Banking Satisfaction StudySM, released today.

This marks the seventh consecutive year Arvest has been recognized as best in class in the Southwest Region. The 2016 J.D. Power study was conducted with more than 5,000 customers throughout the region, which consists of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Oklahoma and Utah.

Arvest received the Southwest Region’s highest score in four factors: product offerings, facility, account information, and fees.

Additionally, Arvest ranked third in the South Central Region, which consists of Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee. Arvest received ratings higher than the South Central regional averages in the five of the six factors analyzed by the study – product offerings, facility, account information, fees, and account activities.

Arvest has now received a top J.D. Power regional award 13 times in eight years across two regions.

To view the full release from J.D. Power, visit*.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution.

Tags: Award, J.D. Power and Associates, Oklahoma, Press Release, Southwest Oklahoma

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