More in Management

  • Oct 2, 2014
    blog

    Farmland movie on Hulu! 3

    I could not be more excited to get the news that the Farmland movie is on Hulu and Hulu Plus! I saw a pre-screen of the film in February at Commodity Classic, and the film was released to a limited screening in theaters in April and May. If you didn't have the chance to see it then, watch it now. Like right now. Stop what you're doing, and watch this incredible film....More
  • Sep 30, 2014
    blog

    Got the racecar, but don’t know how to drive It

    How often do we see, particularly in family business transition, a situation in which the younger generation returns to a business that has been a profitable high performer for the previous generation, but it continuously fails to “finish the race” or underperforms compared to peers when the younger generation steps into the driver’s seat?...More
  • Sep 23, 2014
    blog

    The power of inflation: Time is not on your side! 2

    As you think about retirement, keep in mind how inflation can impact your investment strategies. At a 4% historical long-term inflation rate, $50,000 becomes $25,000 in buying power by the year 2032 (72 / 4 = 18 years). As a goal, one should aspire to generate a return on your investments including dividends and appreciation that meets or exceeds the rate of inflation to maintain buying power....More
  • Sep 16, 2014
    blog

    USDA projects record 2014 crop production 1

    The USDA Crop Production Report released Sept. 11 is projecting record U.S. production in 2014 for both corn and soybeans. Production levels for both crops were increased by about 3% in the latest USDA report, as compared to the August USDA report. USDA left the anticipated harvested acres for corn at 83.8 million acres, and for soybeans at 84.1 million acres, which are unchanged from the Aug. 1 estimate....More
  • Sep 16, 2014
    blog

    Biggest threats to young, beginning farmers 1

    The saga of the young farmer and rancher continues as transition in the agriculture industry is in full bloom. While there is no surefire way to get started, there are some common threats, whether starting from scratch or entering a family business. Let’s examine some of the threats and pitfalls that frequently arise....More
  • Sep 12, 2014
    video

    OADA can help simplify big data 1

    Ault spoke with Managing Editor Susan Winsor about the current disconnect with data in agriculture, as well as how OADA can help farmers manage data and make it work for them, and help with the tasks farmers need help with....More
  • Sep 8, 2014
    blog

    Profit margin compression, part 3 – Price reality 1

    Inflation, while benign in the general economy, has been running full steam ahead in input and operating costs in the agriculture industry ranging anywhere from 5% to 10% annually. Combine this with increases in real estate taxes and the fixed cost component of equipment and machinery, and one can quickly observe how profit margins have quickly disappeared with lower commodity prices....More
  • Sep 2, 2014
    blog

    Profit margin compression, part 2: Operating expenses to revenue ratio 1

    The average producer on FINBIN databases typically spends 73-75¢ to generate $1 of income, leaving only roughly 25¢ for other financial obligations. It is disturbing that this ratio jumped above 80¢ in 2013 for the first time since 1995, illustrating severe margin compression, particularly among the average producers....More
  • Aug 29, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Predicting on-farm costs 6

    Brian Watkins farms near Toledo, Ohio. For a long time, he’s been working on a computer model to predict costs on his 7,000-acre corn and soybean farm. He came up with Cropzilla. Using a $3.50 corn price, the numbers have absolutely influenced the decisions he’s made on his Ohio farm, he says....More
  • Aug 26, 2014
    blog

    Profit margin compression, part 1 1

    In over 30 years analyzing and examining farm record data, I have noticed that profitability decline will usually precede cash flow and repayment ability issues by about two to three years. Could it happen this time?...More

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