More in Management

  • Jul 15, 2014
    blog

    Corn, soybean prices drop after July WASDE report 2

    The USDA World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) Report released July 11 provided more negative numbers for future corn and soybean prices. The report showed significant increases in the projected ending stocks for both corn and soybeans by Sept. 1, 2015. The report also verified the expectations for very good to excellent 2014 national corn and soybean yields in the U.S. Corn and soybean market prices have dropped dramatically in the past few weeks, which will likely have a significant financial impact on farm operators in the Upper Midwest....More
  • Jul 11, 2014
    video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Grain farmers: Know your cost of production 2

    David Kohl, professor emeritus, Virginia Tech University, spoke that the Wyffels Hybrids Corn Strategies Conference at Wild Rose Farm, Inc., near Galesburg, Ill. Kohl stressed the importance of grain and livestock farmers knowing their cost of production in order to be successful....More
  • Jul 11, 2014
    Video
    Corn+Soybean Digest

    Corn market uncertainty 1

    Matt Roberts, associate professor at Ohio State University, spoke at the Wyffels Hybrids Corn Strategies conference in mid-July at the Wild Rose Farm near Galesburg, Ill. Here he talks about the uncertainty of the corn market and prices, adding that there is more uncertainty due to the possibility of corn being added back to livestock rations because of lower corn prices....More
  • Jul 8, 2014
    blog

    Back to the Future, Part 1: Farm economy in 1980s vs. 2010s 1

    One question during a recent forum discussion with ag lenders put me and other professors in the Back to the Future time machine to discuss the similarities and differences in the farm economy now compared to the 1980s....More
  • Jul 1, 2014
    blog

    Economic halftime report 1

    Globally, the economic slowdown of emerging nations along with unrest in Ukraine, and now Iraq, bears watching. Remember, spikes in oil prices have been a major contributor to every recession since 1969. Overall, both the domestic and global economies are muddling along, uninspired by central bank stimulus both here in United States and abroad....More
  • Jun 30, 2014
    blog

    Are farm land values headed for a downturn? 1

    The moderation in commodity prices, along with the potential for increases in ag real estate interest rates, will likely continue to put downward pressure on land values. Some farm management analysts have suggested that a combination of these factors could result in average land values dropping by as much as one-third from the highest levels in the next few years....More
  • Jun 27, 2014
    blog

    Judgment, farm experience impact your bottom line 1

    Technology is a great tool, but don’t discount your judgment. When and whether to enter a wet field, identifying broken tile, how you control spray drift, which surfactant to use, when to use glyphosate and at what levels, which stage of cereal rye is easiest to kill it off (avoid the tillering stage)…you get the idea. These judgment calls, based on your experience, are second nature....More
  • Jun 24, 2014
    blog

    Complacency: The Silent Killer 2

    Complacency can be the silent business killer. Peer analysis and benchmarking can be the catalysts that motivate managers to focus on aspects of the business that are done well, and then step outside with the advisory teams and other leading businesses to break into new territory, taking the business to a new level....More
  • Jun 18, 2014
    blog

    Soybeans could have one last rally 1

    From a "spread" perspective, I continue to hear talk form many traders who suspect the old-crop/new-crop spread (now at it's lowest level since mid-Feb) will continue to deteriorate – at least through the June 30th report. From there it's believed we could see a late inning rally and perhaps one last hurrah!...More
  • Jun 17, 2014
    blog

    Crucial farm transition management conversations: In-laws joining farm operation 1

    How can a son-in-law or daughter-in-law bring up the conversation about joining the farm operation or possible ownership? Often the younger generation family members are intimidated particularly if they have provided labor for the business for quite a while. What will frequently occur is that time will slip by and months become years without these important questions being asked and answered, which often ends up being disastrous to all generations involved....More
  • Jun 16, 2014
    blog

    Dairy industry facts 1

    For decades in Minnesota, June has been known as Dairy Month. Here are some interesting facts and figures about the Dairy industry....More
  • Jun 10, 2014
    blog

    Corn, soybean prices more challenging 2

    It appears the days of $6 corn prices, and maybe even $5 corn, are behind us for the foreseeable future. Projected significant increases in corn carryover inventories, along with fairly good 2014 crop conditions in many areas of the Midwest, will likely continue to put pressure on both cash corn prices, as well as new-crop prices. The outlook for soybean prices is a bit more optimistic, but new-crop soybean prices could also be challenged, if better-than-expected average U.S. soybean yields are achieved in 2014....More
  • Jun 5, 2014
    blog

    $4.58 breakeven corn price: ouch! 2

    Newly released figures from farm-management sage Gary Schnitkey, University of Illinois, amount to a 6% increase for 2013 non-land costs above 2012. That’s $615 non-land costs to produce an acre of 2013 central-Illinois corn versus $581 per acre in 2012....More
  • May 27, 2014
    blog

    2014 Custom farming agreements 1

    Although the concept of a custom farming agreement is simple, close communication between the custom operator and the landowner is essential. A written contract for the custom farming agreement should definitely be prepared that specifies the amount of payment by the landowner to the custom operator, and all other pertinent details....More
  • May 27, 2014
    blog

    Economic indicators and confusing signals 2

    The U.S. economy is showing mixed signals. The lead economic index (LEI) which foretells the future of the economy has been increasing in recent months, most recently up 0.4%, which is bullish for the economy. Sixty percent of the factors that make up the LEI are exhibiting positive signs....More
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