Family Creates “Independent” Niche in Dairy Country
Some high school graduates seem to take a path that leads them straight toward one career. But Clinton Buss of Belmont, Wisconsin, took a road less traveled. The experiences he’s had during the past decade help him better related to his customers today.
“It took me 10 years to figure out what I really enjoy doing is working right here,” says Clinton, who joined Highway Feeds full time in 2013. He works with his sister, his mom and his stepdad in their independent feed and seed business.
Pete serves as president, owner and general manager of Highway Feeds. He places the orders and is primarily responsible for fertilizer, chemicals and equipment sales. Sheila takes care of accounts payable and receivable. Because she’s always on site, Sheila also primarily takes care of walk-in customers. Angie sells feed and trains calf contractors. She also orders animal care products.
While Clint is primarily responsible for sales of Latham® seed and makes most of the feed deliveries, he helps wherever he’s needed. He’s often called to make deliveries, pick up grain and even feed cattle on contract.
Clint’s job experiences help him talk to farmers about different aspects of their farming businesses. He grew up on a dairy farm and spent three years after high school dairy farming with his dad. Then Clint went to work for Highway Feed for two years before taking a job working home construction one summer. When the seasons changed, Clint went to work at the sale barn in Belmont and Bloomington.
“Working at the sale barn was even harder work than dairy farming,” he explains. After spending long days running on concrete working with stubborn cattle, Clint needed to make change. He studied law enforcement for one year before returning to Highway Feed where he’s been ever since.
“I really like the independence of our operation,” says Clint. “Like Latham Hi-Tech Seeds, we offer our farmers independent options. Our customers are free to choose what products best fit their operations. I really enjoy sitting down with farmers and helping them select seed products on a field-by-field basis.”
When Clint gets a chance to step away from the business, he enjoys taking day trips and bow hunting with his wife. Clint and Lauren, who were married in October 2015, have started their own Hereford and Black Angus herd. They also are enjoying sitting down to a homecooked meal, and this pasta recipe often hits the spot for a mid-week quick dinner.
Chicken and Spinach Stuffed Shell Pasta
18 Large Pasta Shells
1 15 oz Container Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
1 Egg, Lightly Beaten
1/4 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
2 cups Frozen Chopped Spinach - thawed and squeezed to drain
1 cup Cooked and Chopped Chicken
1 jar of your favorite tomato sauce (store bought or homemade!)
2 cups shredded Italian Cheese Blend
1. Heat Oven to 350 degrees. Cook and drain pasta as directed on package. Rinse with cool water and drain.
2. Meanwhile in a medium bowl, mix ricotta, egg, Parmesan, spinach, and chicken.
3. Spread 1 cup of tomato sauce in the bottom of an ungreased 13X9 glass baking dish.
4. Spoon ricotta mixture into each pasta shell (about 2 tablespoons in each). Arrange shells in baking dish filling side up, then spoon remaining sauce over the shells.
5. Cover baking dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove foil and sprinkle with Italian cheese blend. Bake uncovered for 5 - 10 minutes until cheese is melted in top.