In the 5 ag stories to read this week, check out some pros and cons to alternative grain storage and read research showing that yield forecast models are accurate. See the variations in farm program payments across high-production states and get tips for calibrating your yield monitor this fall. Finally, enjoy a cool website that features games for the classroom that center on agriculture and farming.
Rain soaked much of the Upper Midwest, providing a generally favorable boost in soil moisture for corn and soybeans in areas where little rain had fallen during the first half of August. Scattered showers dotted the remainder of the Corn Belt, accompanied by a turn toward cooler weather.
The millennial generation of producers will set new trends, use more advanced technology and take the agriculture industry into the future. Now is the time to mentor these young leaders and give them the tools they need to succeed professionally and individually....More
Farm operators are facing one more important deadline for the ARC/PLC Farm Program for the 2014 and 2015 crop years. They need to enroll in the farm program for 2014 and 2015 at their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office by Sept. 30, 2015, in order to be eligible for farm program payments for those two years....More
good risk management should be a number of strategies implemented in various combinations to mitigate risk for specific business needs. Often, a business manager imagines one silver bullet that will magically address all needs in the operation. Unfortunately, there is no single tool that effective....More
Given farm revenues in 2016 budget projections, costs must be reduced to have positive returns. Cost cuts of $100 per acre will be used at the target. Cuts of $100 per acre would result in $19 per acre of net farmer income, levels that are relatively low and do not provide much margin....More
Farm operators in Minnesota, Iowa, and other Midwestern states overwhelmingly selected the Agricultural Risk Coverage-County (ARC-CO) farm program choice for corn and soybeans for the 2014-2018 crop years....More
In my travels conducting seminars, speeches and schools, margins, cash rents and land values appear to be major questions for people connected with the agriculture industry. In order to examine each of these topics in detail, I will use examples from the recent Graduate School of Banking at Colorado (GSBC) course....More
Many agricultural experts and economists have been warning for the past couple of years that we could be headed for a significant correction in farm land values in the Midwest. Based on recent data, there appears to be evidence that a reduction in average land values may be occurring in some regions of the U.S., including the Upper Midwest....More
Economic health and viability are at the forefront for many involved in today’s agriculture industry. While some may prefer to just eat ice cream and hope for improved opportunities, proactive management strategies will be required for success....More
Agriculture is in a time of transition that will affect assets, operations and people. The ag lending industry, however, is also in a time of significant transition. Similar to agriculture, the careful management of this transition will be critical; especially, as some segments of agriculture enter turbulent economic times....More
The 5 ag stories this week remind growers to check grain bins when the weather is wet, warm and humid, and to scout for white grubs in corn fields. Learn about China's soil moisture depletion, and the cause. See the decline in land values, and finally, enjoy a graphic showing just what it takes to be a farmer.
The USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) has announced the availability of a new crop insurance coverage option that provides producers with coverage against an unexpected decrease in their operating margin. Starting in the 2016 crop year, the new margin protection plan will be available in addition to underlying crop insurance policies in select counties starting for corn, rice, soybeans, and spring wheat....More
Overall, the United States economy at halftime will grade out strong for the coasts and in the southern part of the country. Weather will of course, continue to play a large role in our overall economic state. In any scenario, however, a sense of caution is prudent in the flyover states....More
While difficult, decisions of restraint during the super cycle of profits put producers at an advantage going into this economic downturn. Many of them forward priced with a guaranteed profit instead of waiting for possible higher profits. This looks like a smart strategy from today’s perspective....More
From weeds to insect pests to disease, resistance to efficient, economical crop protection products is threatening their efficacy and raising costs for crop producers. So why do regulations or the chemical industry always seem to have a delayed reaction to resistance? A big part of the problem involves dueling definitions, suggests Tim Dennehy, manager, Global Insect Resistance Management, Bayer Seeds....More
Location and quality of land continue to be the main drivers of pricing for individual tracts. The stability of this market is maintained by a lower supply of land for sale, contrasted with a continued demand for quality properties. Farmers National Company statistics show the volume of properties for sale is down 40% over the past six months, as compared to the past two years.
A long term trend cannot be determined by two year periods prior or post; nevertheless, adjustments in profit levels appear to be settling in. Multi-year, high profits cause margin compression as fixed and variable costs increase. This is just another example of the old saying, “high profits cure high profits.”...More
In response to the latest WTO ruling, legislation has now been passed by the U.S. House of Representatives that would eliminate the COOL requirements for beef, pork, and chicken muscle and ground products; however, the U.S. Senate has yet to act on the legislation. There is considerable bi-partisan support for this legislation in Congress, especially from states that could be facing significant economic impacts from trade retaliation by Canada and Mexico....More
Since Syngenta chose to take Monsanto’s private buyout offer public, Monsanto now counters by talking to shareholders and the farm media.
I recently spoke with Mike Frank, Monsanto’s global operations lead, who stated their case for the value of this Syngenta buyout....More
In the 5 ag stories to read this week, experts remind you to be on the lookout for soybean aphids, and offer the best options for sidedressing nitrogen this summer. Read and watch testimony from the latest GMO labeling hearing, and check out a calendar for when to scout different corn pests. Finally, enjoy a list of ways you know you grew up in the country.
It is imperative in today’s world of trade risk to build up extra liquidity or working capital reserves. How much is enough depends on debt servicing requirements, and marketing and risk management plans including crop insurance....More