Path Home Shows 2011 Show Archive April 2011 Show 1116 Interview with Wayne Krehbiel - Ag Hall of Fame

Interview with Wayne Krehbiel - Ag Hall of Fame

Wayne Krehbiel receives the Governor's Outstanding Achievement Award in Agriculture for his life-long commitment and work in the ag industry.
Interview with Wayne Krehbiel - Ag Hall of Fame

Wayne Krehbiel

For more information visit these links:

Oklahoma Ag Hall of Fame
Oklahoma Farm Report

Show Dates

Show 1116: Interview with Wayne Krehbiel - Ag Hall of Fame

Air date: April 17, 2011

 

Transcript

ROB MCCLENDON:  WELL FEW INDUSTRIES IN OUR STATE HAVE UNDERGONE MORE CHANGE THAN AGRICULTURE; AND, FEW PEOPLE HAVE WORKED HARDER TO DEVELOP THAT INDUSTRY THAN WAYNE KREHBIEL.  LIVING ON THE SAME FARM HIS GRANDFATHER ESTABLISHED BEFORE STATEHOOD, KREHBIEL’S LIFE WORK HAS CENTERED ON HELPING HIS NEIGHBORS WHO JUST HAPPEN TO BE ALL AROUND THE WORLD.

[SOUND OF BARN DOOR]

ROB:  INSIDE THIS BARN…

WAYNE KREHBIEL:  THERE’S A LOT OF IDEAS THAT COME FROM HERE.

ROB:  A LIFETIME OF INNOVATION HANGING FROM THE RAFTERS.

KREHBIEL:  I NEVER LOOKED AT HARD THINGS AND SAY I CAN’T GO FROM HERE.

ROB:  AN ATTITUDE THAT’S SERVED WAYNE KREHBIEL WELL.

KREHBIEL:  YOU LEARNT FROM THE MISTAKES AND IMPROVE ON WHAT NEEDS TO BE IMPROVED ON.

ROB:  SO EVERY FAILURE JUST A SUCCESS IN THE MAKING?

KREHBIEL:  THAT’S RIGHT.  THAT’S NOT ALWAYS FAILURE, JUST A LOT OF TIMES IT’S CHALLENGES; THAT’S THE WAY I LOOK AT IT.

ROB:  GROWING UP ON A FARM HIS GRANDFATHER BOUGHT WITH A WAGON AND A PAIR OF MULES, MR. KREHBIEL’S EARLIEST MEMORIES REVOLVE AROUND AGRICULTURE.

KREHBIEL:  WHEN I WAS IN UH, MAYBE 10 YEARS OLD I RUN A COMBINE.

ROB:  SO WHEN IT CAME TIME TO PAY FOR COLLEGE, KREHBIEL TOOK HIS FATHERS COMBINE AND HEADED NORTH.

KREHBIEL:  AND I THINK THAT PROBABLY HELPED ME MORE THAN ANYTHING.

ROB:  WATCHING OTHERS, AND LEARNING ALONG THE WAY.

KREHBIEL:  NO MATTER HOW, HOW ADVANCED THINGS ARE YOU ALWAYS GOTTA KEEP IN MIND THAT YOU MIGHT ADVANCE THEM BETTER.

ROB:  A DRIVE AROUND KREHBIEL’S FARM, IS A LESSON IN ADOPTING AND ADAPTING TO NEW TECHNOLOGY; WHAT LOOKS LIKE A RUSTED TANK, IS IN ACTUALITY A DEVISE THAT HELPED REVOLUTIONIZE PRODUCTIVITY IN WHEAT FIELDS AROUND THE STATE.

KREHBIEL:  WELL, THERE WASN’T NO FERTILIZER BEING USED IN THOSE DAYS, BACK IN THE MID 50’S.

ROB:  SO WITH A DEVISE OF HIS OWN MAKING, KREHBIEL TURNED AN OLD PLOWSHARE INTO A VEHICLE TO APPLY A NEW TYPE OF FERTILIZER.

KREHBIEL:  I THOUGHT WELL, I’M GONNA TRY AND GET SOME ANHYDROUS AND THE ONLY PLACE I COULD FIND IT WAS AT EL RENO; THEY GOT ANHYDROUS AMMONIA IN AND SOLD IT TO ICE PLANTS TO MAKE ICE, BUT THEY DIDN’T USE IT FOR AGRICULTURAL PURPOSES.  SO, I STARTED PUTTING IT ON WHEAT AND MADE DIFFERENT MACHINES TO PUT IT ON WHEAT.  WHEN I GOT INTO IT AND WAS REALLY GOING I HAD, I TESTED EVERYBODY’S SOIL, HAD SOIL SAMPLES; I FELT LIKE I WAS A COUNTY AGENT.   [LAUGH]  THE PRODUCTION OF WHEAT FROM 15 BUSHELS OF WHEAT TO 40 BUSHELS OF WHEAT AND 50 BUSHELS OF WHEAT IN JUST 3 OR 4 YEARS.  YOU CAN’T IMAGINE HOW THE TRANSITION HAPPENED IN SUCH A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME.

ROB:  AND FROM THAT, KREHBIEL STARTED HIS OWN FERTILIZER BUSINESS; WINNING AWARDS AND EXPERIMENTING WITH NEW TECHNIQUES AND NEW TECHNOLOGIES THAT HAVE TAKEN HIM TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH.

KREHBIEL:  WE HAD A FELLOW THAT SHEARED SHEEP, AND HE HAD A, HE HAD A SHEEP SHEARING MACHINE THAT I THOUGHT THAT I COULD MAYBE IMPROVE ON.  YOU KNOW, I WOKE UP IN THE NIGHT THINKING HOW I COULD MAKE THAT AND THE NEXT MORNING IT WENT TOGETHER JUST BOOM, BOOM, BOOM.  AND, I SOLD LOTS OF ‘EM; I SUPPOSE I’VE SOLD 5,000 AROUND THE WORLD.

ROB:  THAT LED KREHBIEL FROM THE FROZEN ARTIC TUNDRA SHEARING MUSK OX TO THE SUN-BAKED DESERTS OF SAUDI ARABIA.

KREHBIEL:  SO WE PUT TOGETHER A FARM TO THE LAST NUT AND BOLT; AND, WE COMPLETELY DEVELOPED FARMS IN SAUDI ARABIA.

ROB:  AT 80 YEARS YOUNG, KREHBIEL HAS NO INTENTIONS OF SLOWING DOWN; WHILE THE LEGS MAY MOVE A BIT SLOWER THESE DAYS, THE MIND IS STILL JUST AS QUICK.

WELL THERE YOU GO.

[LAUGHTER]

SO, WHETHER HE’S TRYING TO SAVE TIME AND MONEY INTRODUCING A MACHINE THAT DEPOSITS HARVESTED WHEAT INTO HUGE PLASTIC BAGS UNTIL IT’S TRANSPORTED TO MARKET, OR JUST FIGURING OUT HOW TO KEEP HIS SHEEP’S WATER FROM FREEZING, KREHBIEL’S IDEAS SPRING FROM A PHILOSOPHY THAT HAS LESS TO DO WITH PERSONAL SUCCESS THAN A LIFE DEVOTED TO HELPING OTHERS.

KREHBIEL:  SO WHEN YOU MENTION SUCCESS, IT’S NOT HOW MUCH MONEY YOU CAN MAKE FOR YOURSELF, BUT IS IT GOOD FOR MANKIND?  IS IT GOOD FOR YOUR NEIGHBORS?  THAT, TO ME, IS WHAT SUCCESS IS.

ROB:  WELL SUCH INNOVATION, INTEGRITY, AND INQUISITIVENESS WAS HONORED THIS WEEK WHEN MR. KREHBIEL RECEIVED THE GOVERNOR’S OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT AWARD IN AGRICULTURE.  TO HEAR MORE OF MR. KREHBIEL’S STORIES, JUST HEAD TO OUR WEBSITE AT OKHORIZON.COM AND CLICK ON THIS WEEK’S VALUE ADDED.