Moore Farms

Stacy Irwin wasn’t necessarily looking for a new health care benefits plan when she attended a Columbiana County Farm Bureau meeting earlier this year, but after chatting with Mike Boyert, who serves as northeast regional trustee on Ohio Farm Bureau’s state board, that quickly changed.

Boyert, who was attending the meeting to help increase Farm Bureau memberships, shared his own experiences and the value he’s found through his own membership to ignite Irwin’s interest in some of the member benefits — specifically the OFB Health Benefits Plan, a plan that offers potential savings for sole proprietors and employers in the agricultural economic sector.

Boyert shared how Farm Bureau was there for him when he and his wife began their business, Boyert’s Greenhouse and Farm in 1987, when they were trying to get what was then a 34-acre operation up and running in Medina, Ohio.

Today, Boyert has 47 employees, including his four children, and takes pride in treating all of his workers like family, and health benefits were no exception.

“Providing health benefits through a reputable organization is a good feeling as a business owner. You go to bed at night, you feel safe and you don’t have to worry,” Boyert said. “Being involved on the state board opened my eyes to look for value and bring it to our membership.”

The OFB Health Benefits Plan offers potential savings for Ohio farmers and small businesses with 1-50 employees.

“In our world today, trying to keep an employee around, especially in the agriculture industry, it’s tough,” Boyert said. “But, if you can give them one more thing, one more tool they can take home, it’s really a win-win for everybody.”

Igniting interest with value

After hearing positive feedback from Boyert, the Health Benefits Plan piqued Irwin’s interest as she and her husband, Gary, reviewed the benefit options for their employees, something they do annually. The Irwins own K&S Millwrights, a family-owned company that designs, builds and maintains feed mills, grain storage facilities, and on-farm grain management operations. The Irwins’ company has 27 employees.

Gary and Stacy Irwin
Gary and Stacy Irwin

“Our team at K&S includes single people, couples, and families, and every year Gary and I review our health benefits and choose a plan that provides the most benefit to our team,” said Irwin.

Irwin, a Columbiana County Farm Bureau board member, said she learned about the OFB Health Benefits Plan a few years ago, but didn’t realize at the time that it could benefit her as a business owner.

“Initially, I understood the plan to be for individuals or farm families who did not have off-farm employment or the opportunity to obtain health benefits from an employer,” Irwin said.

After reviewing the cost and coverage of the Ohio Farm Bureau health plan, the Irwins were both impressed at the affordability and the robust coverage that it offered. After looking at the comparison of the different plans and facing an increase in health care costs with their current plan, their next move became obvious – go with the Ohio Farm Bureau health plan.
Prior to switching to the OFB Health Benefits Plan, K&S Millwrights was using a plan that required the company to pay a monthly fee and belong to a particular Chamber of Commerce. By joining the OFB health plan, the company was able to reduce these costs.
As a nurse practitioner with experience in the health care industry, Irwin knows the importance of providing good health insurance coverage to employees. She believes that comprehensive coverage helps alleviate the stress associated with untreated medical issues due to cost.

“It is very important to Gary and I to provide our team and our own family with benefits that are affordable and offer comprehensive coverage,” said Irwin. “ I do not want our team to have to face the costs of health care coverage that could be avoided with a well-planned health care insurance option.”

The Irwins joined the plan May 1, and plan to renew in January, and so far they have had positive feedback from employees, and their own family has had positive experiences with the coverage as well.

According to Irwin, the OFB Health Benefits Plan has exceeded her expectations.

“I would encourage not only individual farm families to look at the OFB Health Benefits Plan, but also small businesses,” said Irwin. “As an employer of less than 50 people, we can run into roadblocks, and this was an opportunity for K&S to pass savings on to our employees.”


Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Farm Labor Resources
I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

Strong communities
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

Groovy Plants Ranch
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

Suggested Tags: