Dealer Spotlight: Brussels Agri, Ontario, Canada
We couldn’t think of a better way to highlight our Gallagher Certified Pasture Pro dealerships than with Passion for Pasture’s model dealership, Brussels Agri Services Ltd. of Brussels, Ontario. Brussels Agri has been owned and operated by Tim and Donna Prior since 1996.
After deciding he didn’t like being in sales, Tim decided to pursue his passion of working with livestock and the land. Tim focused more of his efforts on his own farm and became a farmer-dealer for Gallagher fencing products. He eventually created a name for himself as the go-to advisor for grazing and fencing assistance in the area, especially for producers who were seeking to better manage their pastures with electric fences.
When the opportunity for a retail space opened in 1996 in a prime location just down the road from their farm, Tim and Donna moved their Gallagher products to that space and incorporated fence installation services into the business model. Tim credits the proximity of their farm to the retail location for much of their business success. “When a customer comes into the store and has questions about grazing practices or products or seems to be a prospect to start managed grazing, it’s really handy to take them over for a quick visit to our farm and show the entire system in action,” says Prior.
Prior’s business philosophy is, “Add value to your customers; teach them about the products; provide them with solutions; and sell the packaged deal.” It sounds a bit ironic coming from a guy who hated being in sales, but Prior’s aversion to sales might be what makes him so successful and keeps customers coming back. Tim and his crew will often spend months, sometimes years, working with a customer to get them the right pasture management products and design to optimize their operation for their specific goals. Prior isn’t in the business to sell a customer just any piece of equipment. He’s in business to sell them the right piece of equipment to do more, grow more, and create more on their operations.
Tim and Donna intensively graze their Wagyu cattle on their 100-acre farm, Grazing Meadows, where Tim says he only needs one type of farm tool: “A four-legged, forage-harvesting-dung-spreader.” However, knowing how to manage that tool is key to making intensive grazing successful on any operation. Prior has more than thirty years of experience practicing managed grazing on his own farm. That, combined with working with a variety of other grazers across Ontario, has added to his extensive library of grazing knowledge. He credits those personal experiences as a grazer to his success in providing first-rate products and services to other grazers— and Prior must be doing something right. He and Donna have been awarded the Ontario Pasture Award and Brussels Agri has become one of the largest independent Gallagher dealers in the world.
Tim and Donna also host an annual Pasture Walk at Grazing Meadows. They draw a crowd of hundreds to watch employees and industry experts demonstrate grazing products and discuss grazing management. Tim often exhibits at grazing events and is frequently invited to speak at various conferences around southern Ontario. His diligent efforts to build the grazing community have paid off. Former customers return for additional services and word spreads. New customers experience Brussels Agri’s respectable work and the positive results of improving their management practices. The demand for fence installation services recently became so great that Prior had to add another full-time crew this year. Now Prior has two crews lead by lead installer, Trevor Elliott, a nine-year veteran who Prior credits with much of the business’ success.
“When it comes to starting or transitioning your operation into being more oriented toward management intensive grazing, it’s best to work with someone who knows what can and has worked in the past,” says Prior. “Each operation is different as far as geography and goals, and we always consider those things at Brussels Agri when designing a system for a customer.”
To get in touch with Prior or learn more about grazing, you can check out Brussels Agri Service’s website at BrusselsAgri.com or Grazing Meadows at GrazingMeadowsWagyu.com. Be sure to check out Prior’s videos about pasture management and Gallagher animal management products on these websites and YouTube.
If you’re located away from Ontario but looking for services like the Priors offer, check out the Gallagher Passion for Pasture program at PassionForPasture.com (USA) or PassionForPasture.ca (Canada) and click on “Find A Pasture Pro.” Gallagher’s Certified Pasture Pro’s have been trained in pasture management techniques and mapping out grazing designs for local customers’ to meet their specific operational goals. Our network of model dealers can advise you on grazing techniques or pasture management and provide fence and water installation services to make managed grazing work for you. New, aspiring, or experienced grazers seeking advice are encouraged to reach out to our professionals at PassionForPasture@gallagher.com if you find you don’t have a Pasture Pro in your area.
Our Pasture Pro's have been trained to answer site specific questions and recommend designs related to managed grazing operations. Maybe you're interested in the highest quality, innovative animal management products on the market or fence and water system installation services? They offer that too!
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