Speaking on Business: Ag Air
As a crop duster, John Cooper has spent thousands of hours in the air, spraying 400,000 acres per growing season.
This is Chris Redgrave for Zions Bank Speaking on Business.
Not everyone can say they run their business from the seat of an airplane but with his company, Ag Air in Burley, that’s what John Cooper does every day. As a crop duster, he’s spent thousands of hours in the air, spraying 400,000 acres per growing season. After 34 years, he says business is going strong and he’s excited with how his company is doing, especially since he’s passing it to the next generation with his son-in-law, Brock Bench, prepared to come on board.
John was first introduced to this profession from a neighbor in Texas who was crop duster. He fell in love and started Ag Air in Burley. He loves agriculture and understands the importance of what it does for our country. This type of work takes skill since the average working speed for these type of planes, which operate on a 1500 horsepower Pratt and Whitney engine, run at 165 miles per hour, and fly just a few feet off the ground. Each airplane also carries 800 gallons, so it takes intense concentration to maneuver safely.
During the busy season, John runs three airplanes for Ag Air as he flies throughout the Mini-Cassia area, with 12 employees. One of the most common requests is a protective substance for potato crops to protect them from fungus.
For Zions Bank, I’m Chris Redgrave, speaking on business.