Just Right Grain Systems
In Maybee, Michigan, Just Right Grain Systems is the source for comprehensive grain system sales, design, construction, installation and service. Founded in 2002, Just Right has become a go-to contractor for grain bins, grain handling systems and some of the industry’s most advanced grain dryers. Just Right can formulate plans for system layout and expansion for both larger commercial operations and small farms, performing all concrete, crane and construction work in-house to fast track timelines.
As a mid-sized, family-owned company, Just Right is just-the-right-sized agricultural partner, large enough to tackle commercial cooperative and elevator projects and small enough to work with single farmers. “We’re a full-service agricultural construction company,” says Justin Roof, founder and president of Just Right. “We do a lot more custom construction than our competitors. We’ll go in and retrofit a system just as quick as we’ll build a new system, whereas our competitors often avoid the guys who need a repair for large-scale jobs. That’s not to say we won’t take on a large co-op or elevator, but generally, we cater to the small to mid-sized, individual farming operations.”
Situated equidistant between Detroit and Toledo, Ohio, in Maybee, grain producers in southeastern Michigan and northwestern Ohio know they can call on Just Right for any range of construction services. “Our level of customer service stands out,” adds Roof. “We’re the guys you can call when no one else wants to deal with it.”
Meeting the need for added infrastructure
Roof established Just Right in 2002 after years of related construction experience and a longtime family farming background. “I grew up farming my whole life and my father was in the industry too,” he says. “In the late ‘80s I was working for some local guys and they just couldn’t sustain another employee so I went into construction and started building houses and other odds and ends around the building trade.”
Within the proximity of Detroit’s auto industry, Roof also worked on many commercial construction projects. “When the auto industry took a dive, this market started to dry up,” he recounts. “The farmer that rents my land wanted to move some grain bins and he hired us to take them down. Since then that’s mainly what we’ve done; working with grain equipment.”
After this first project and a handful more, Roof realized he’d found a niche market. “There had never been a lot of grain infrastructure in our immediate area, more so when you move more into Indiana and Illinois, into the Corn Belt,” he explains. “Agricultural construction wasn’t a huge business in southeastern Michigan and northwestern Ohio until about 15 years ago.”
As the need for more grain storage has increased, Just Right has been there all along to build it up, take it down and relocate systems or to just retrofit an existing system. “We still have the same footprint,” says Roof. “We’re located right in the middle of Detroit and Toledo, serving a two to three hour radius of Maybee and we occasionally touch northern Indiana, but once you start getting into the Corn Belt there are many players doing what we do.”
Just Right runs a fairly small crew with about 10 full-time employees. “We do most everything in-house,” says Roof. “Even through the slower winter months, I try to keep everyone working and avoid laying everyone off because we are lucky to have high-quality people. We’ll service our equipment and reorganize to keep busy through the winter and keep our guys working.”
Quality over quantity
Just Right’s experienced staff is knowledgeable in a range of product lines. The company has more than a decade of experience moving and selling new and used equipment from leading suppliers, including Conrad American, GSI, Brock Sukup, Honeyville, Grain Handler, Lambton, Sudenga, Chief and Wheatheart. “Our large portfolio of equipment suppliers allows us to make tailored, informed recommendations that best suit the individual farm,” explains Roof. “Oftentimes, our competitors just try to push the products of one specific equipment supplier because there’s a higher profit margin; we just want the right solution for the customer.”
Roof says it has never been about making massive profits. “I didn’t get into this business just to make money,” he says. “I actually love farming and love being around the industry, so making a profit is a bonus.”
Roof says he considers a project to be a success if he can look back and know his team found the right solution and delivered a quality, long-lasting product. “We want to be the company that people know they can call and trust,” he adds. “If we can make a decent living and feel good about the job we’re doing at the end of the day and look back and be proud, then it’s a job well done.”
As a younger owner, Roof says he’s more apt to bring in new products and efficiencies. “Some of our competitors stick with the same suppliers in this old-school way where they get into a product and that’s what they sell and that’s it,” he says. “We keep looking for new products. We might pick up a new dealership based on improved efficiencies – we’re slow and careful in doing so – but if we think it’s something the market will take, we’ll go with it.”
“There’s willingness within the new farming generation to adopt new technologies and do things differently,” he adds.
And with a lack of infrastructure, Roof says he doesn’t see business slowing anytime soon for Just Right. “Even with corn prices down, the demand for storage and new bins is present,” he says. “I don’t see the same highs and lows as we experienced through the recession where it was busy one year and nearly nothing the next. Now I see a steady, even stream of business.”
Today’s farmers face new challenges and Just Right Grain Systems is there see them through with grain storage and handling solutions that fit the specific needs of each operation.