New Barry County Regional Stockyards owners are no strangers to the industry

Life in Southwest Missouri provides many opportunities to be part of the local agriculture.
Most of us enjoy our time on the farm, and on the production end of the industry. Others within the industry provide services for producers that become invaluable resources for building our businesses and livestock production.
The new owners of the Barry County Regional Stockyards in Exeter, Mo., are providing a service to area cattle producers, as well as other small livestock growers all over Southwest Missouri and Northwest Arkansas. Being life-long residents of the area, with family roots firmly planted within local agriculture, the father-son duo of Bob and Rob Sorensen, along with partner Junior Galyen are excited to begin a fresh start with the livestock auction, which hold sales each Saturday, that they now own and operate together as friends and family.
Together they are working on growth strategies, which include changes currently taking place, and are planned for the future. They envision their new livestock auction becoming a pivotal selling venue for the area producers, as well as providing another consistent resource for beef buyers that work within the area.
“We would like to see our average volume go to 1,000 head a sale,” said Rob Sorensen. “We have at least four packers (buyers) represented here, as well as other order-buyers that will be here regardless of which Saturday it is.”
Running a sale barn takes a fine balance of sellers and buyers.
“Order-buyers set the market, the farmers make the market,” Junior explained.
“On the topic of creating a healthy market. Good competition is good for everybody,” Bob also added. There are bargains at every sale. Not everyone is looking for the same thing every time. You’ve got to be able to provide variety and make the seller and the buyer happy.”
The Sorensens, along with Galyen, are lifelong livestock auction participants. Though Bob doesn’t have any memory of it, he has been told that he had his first sale barn experience as a week-old infant.
“I grew up around the Springfield (Mo.) sale barns, and my first job was sorting at Springfield,” Junior said.
Rob grew up among the sale barn cattle and catwalks his entire life. His dad, Bob, was one of the owners and operators of the Monett Salebarn during the 1970s, and has always been a part of the industry.
It seems that with their combined history and experience, that this was a partnership a long time in the making. Being seasoned sellers and buyers themselves with experience on both sides of the fence is all good in a partnership where growth is a possibility, and helping bring more money into the community in which you have grown in and love is a factor in your decisions.
As well as being partners, the Sorensens and Galyen are friends as well.
“All three of us have sale barn in our experience – but we are good friends, too,” Bob said. “We do things together, we have the same interest, and we all love what we are doing.”
Though they are focusing on providing a venue for a primarily cattle auction, they provide an outlet for smaller livestock at the beginning of every Saturday sale.
The sale, which begins at 11 a.m., starts with the sale of goats, sheep and pigs, if they are present. Bucket calves are also sold early, then feeder stock cattle and the rest of the cattle line-up.
Customer service is a priority for Barry County Regional Stockyards.
“We try to accommodate the needs of our customers,” Junior said. “We will take in cattle 24-7, and feed them and keep them watered ‘til sale time.”
Though their ownership of the sale barn in Exeter is new, the familiarity they have with each other and the local surroundings are not. Their combined experience has made the transition seem effortless.


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