Territory Sales Manager
Growing up on a hog and beef farm in northwest Illinois, across the river from Muscatine, Iowa, Ken Geuns was familiar with Kent feeds – especially since he and an older brother grew up showing cattle for 4-H.
“It was simply the thing to do, even back then – feed your show cattle 34 Baby Beef,” Geuns says. “Kent was highly respected, highly trusted. It’s always had quite the loyal following.”
When Geuns (pronounced “Guns”) retired from his faculty position at Michigan State University after 34 years in the Department of Animal Science, he says he couldn’t pass up an opportunity to join the beef sales team for Kent Nutrition Group (KNG). Geuns owns a small beef operation near Lansing, Michigan, and has experimented with many different Kent products himself, which makes selling them second nature. Using his own on-farm experience, several years ago Geuns convinced a neighbor to switch from a competitor’s product to Kent’s Calf Creep Feed line – a move that brought results.
“Kent products will perform the way we say they’ll perform,” he says. “The quality comes from having highly knowledgeable personnel working on it every day.”
Geuns usually spends four days a week traveling throughout western Michigan, checking in with dealers about promotions or new products, servicing existing customers and identifying new ones. He reserves one day each week to work from his home office on follow ups, reports and scheduling. His wife, Deb, works with him on their farm too.
“Thirty head of beef cows and calves don’t keep us that busy year-round, but it’s a tag team effort,” he says. “We feel so fortunate to have this farm.”
One thing Geuns is most proud of is Kent’s commitment to the Safe Feed/Safe Food program, because certification requires production plants to exceed industry standards in feed safety. He says the best producers understand that quality control is extremely important, not only to their business but to the greater good of delivering a safe and wholesome food product in the end.
“I’m quite familiar with the guidelines that our plants adhere to as part of this initiative,” Geuns says. “It matters to customers too.”
Something else that matters in today’s market is that Kent is still family owned – a concept Geuns says “is extremely important to people.”
“Customers appreciate that the grandson and great-grandson of the company’s founder are intimately involved in running the business,” he says. “We don’t have a big, disinterested board of directors. It’s a family.”
Ken lives with his wife, Deb, daughter Christina, two house cats, various barn cats and a dog named Bonzo on an 80-acre farm in Bath, Michigan. In his free time, he enjoys gardening (flowers), showing cattle and farming.