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  • Aug 21, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Using UAVs on the farm 1

    Jim Love, farm business advisor, Beck’s Hybrids, talks about using UAVs on the farm. “Once you’ve purchased the plane or the helicopter the money is spent, so now the trick is, how many times can I use it. Even if it’s a small problem, if I can sort it out, it’s going to be better for the grower,” he says....More
  • Aug 19, 2014
    blog

    Global and domestic economic risk

    Currently, as of mid-August, geopolitical risk is the largest risk with a “code red.” The unrest in Ukraine and tension in the Middle East move markets daily. Unfortunately, agriculture is often the industry first affected by political and military unrest....More
  • Aug 5, 2014
    blog

    Can soybeans transition to a bullish story? 1

    The soybean "technicians" are looking back at prices noticing that they are at the same levels as they were on July11th.  Many are also noting that a "key bullish reversal" could be building.  As I have mentioned over the past several reports, we are definitely in the midst of a major weather market, but we are also transitioning from a bullish old crop story to a potentially extremely bearish new crop story....More
  • Aug 4, 2014
    blog

    Strategies for handling tighter margins in agriculture 1

    A young agricultural lender recently asked, “With tighter margins anticipated in the future, where should producers focus their energy to maintain viability of their operations?” While there is no one strategy to fit all, the following is some advice that can be applied regardless of the business cycle or business enterprise....More
  • Aug 1, 2014
    blog

    Weather helping soybean yield 2

    Several well respected sources think that we could see the current USDA bean yield estimate of 45.2bpa, be pushed higher by up 3-4%, meaning a 46.5bpa to 47bpa, may not be out of the question. A jump in yields that substantial could push ending stocks north of 500 million bushels and prices below $10.00....More
  • Jul 30, 2014
    video

    Farmland market outlook 1

    Todd Keuthe, University of Illinois, talks about the market for farmland. "Most farmland owners see it as a long-term investment," Keuthe says. "People are willing to pay 34 times what they expect to earn."...More
  • Jul 29, 2014
    blog

    Back to the Future, Part 3: Interest rates now vs. 1980s 1

    It is not only today’s low interest rates, but the fact that there has been little movement in rates over almost a half a decade which is interesting. The accommodative Federal Reserve, attempting to stimulate the general economy, has, in turn, stimulated the agriculture and rural economy, putting it on steroids with extreme appreciation in farmland values and a depressed dollar, which has been very beneficial to agricultural export markets....More
  • Jul 25, 2014
    blog

    Ideas you can use to reduce risk 5

    As a farmer, how do you reduce risk? Ideas to accomplish that include: planting offensive and defensive hybrids and planning for multiple alternate future scenarios. Take some time to think about how you might react to reduced rail transportation, expanded GMO bans, an increase in the grain supply outside of the U.S....More
  • Jul 22, 2014
    blog

    Can soybean demand keep grain prices afloat? 1

    I suspect with Chinese demand staying strong, some definite uncertainties remaining in Argentina and the entire month of August still ahead of our U.S. crop, the trade may take a bit slower approach to reducing price-risk. Producers should continue to keep hedges in place. Any rally back towards the $11.00 to $11.30 range must be viewed as an opportunity to reduce longer-term risk....More
  • Jul 22, 2014
    blog

    Candidate forums highlight Farmfest 2

    Farmfest 2014 will feature an exciting line-up of feature forums, including candidate forums for Minnesota governor, U.S. Senate and congressional candidates from Minnesota’s first, second, sixth and seventh districts. The forums will be held August 5, 6, and 7, in the Wicks Forum Building, near the center of the show site, which is located at the Gilfillan Estate, 7 miles southeast of Redwood Falls, Minnesota....More
  • Jul 22, 2014
    blog

    Back to the Future, Part 2: Ag lending and financial management 2

    An interesting trend in both the 1980s and today is that late in the economic cycle, many lending institutions saw opportunity in the agriculture industry, and thus came into the field of agriculture for profits....More
  • Jul 21, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Cost management strategies 1

    Michael Langemeier, associate director, Center for Commercial Agriculture, Purdue University, talks about managing farm costs. He says growers need to seriously question new machinery purchases and that cash rents should be negotiated. Those two items can help control costs when commodity prices fall below breakeven levels....More
  • Jul 18, 2014
    blog

    Here’s a cash rent approach you can live with 2

    Sam Halcomb calculates a field’s revenue-generating potential, then offers a landlord 25-33% of that for cash rent. He’s found over the years that 25-33% accurately reflects a point where he can profit from current market conditions, while capturing present market values to satisfy the landlord....More
  • Jul 18, 2014
    video

    Marketing strategy for low-priced corn 1

    Matt Roberts, associate professor at Ohio State University, talks about marketing strategies for lower-priced corn. He says corn producers are going to have to be very tactical, as he doesn’t see the high corn prices coming back any time soon. Growers should focus on HTAs and maximize on-farm storage, he says....More
  • Jul 17, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Farmers: Be an advocate for agriculture 1

    Agriculture is becoming more and more distant, said David Kohl, professor emeritus, Virginia Tech University, when he spoke with CSD Editor Kurt Lawton at the Wyffels Hybrids Corn Strategies Conference at Wild Rose Farm, Inc., near Galesburg, Ill. “Anyone involved in the ag industry has to be an advocate; not only to other producers, but to the non-farm public,” he says....More
  • Jul 15, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    The farmer as a CEO 1

    David Kohl spoke with CSD Editor Kurt Lawton about the farmer as a CEO, noting that profitable businesses have good people. From allocating profits to working capital and cost of production, as well as lender relationships, Kohl says that being proactive and having the right people around you is going to be critical for success....More

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