Like any high-stakes card game, knowing when to hold or fold is vital to your farm business. That is especially true today for land leases – with input costs holding, crop prices folding and operators dangling from record high rents....More
The final 2014 MYA prices announced by the National Ag Statistics Service (NASS) were $3.70 per bushel for corn, and $10.10 per bushel for soybeans. These are the MYA prices that will be used across the United States on a county basis to determine if corn and soybean producers are eligible for a 2014 ARC-CO payment in October....More
Increased oversight and regulation limit your lender’s flexibility. Be aware of this situation and be prepared! Make sure your financial records are up to date and accurate. Maintain adequate working capital....More
In the 5 agriculture stories to read this week, get some considerations for lime applications and learn more information about tar spot, a newly spotted corn disease. Review crop budget changes for 2016 and get some harvest and post-harvest tips. Finally, enjoy a story about farmers helping farmers in a time of great need.
There is no magic silver bullet in selecting the next best enterprise for your farm operation. First, assess the goals and values of the business, family and personal lives. After examining the goals, ascertain whether adding a new enterprise is consistent with the goals, both short and long-term. It does not matter what the new enterprise may be if the current business cannot support it....More
Average rental rates for 2015 did drop a bit in some areas, but in general have remained quite high across the region. Farm operators and landlords are now beginning the process of negotiating land rental contracts for the 2016 crop year, and are trying to arrive at equitable rental rates, based on the lower crop prices that we are now experiencing....More
In the 5 agriculture stories to read this week, get some tips for harvesting down corn and insight into reduced fertilizer application given low commodity prices. Read about climate change consensus from non-climate scientists and learn which farm management practices are the worst. Finally, read an article reminding us that GMOs are more than just food.
Cash rents on professionally managed farmland likely will decrease for the 2016 cropping year. Rents on non-professionally managed farmland likely will decrease as well. However, projected rent decreases are not large enough to cause farmers to have positive returns in 2016....More
First, one must consider the producer’s goals; business, family and personal. Next, look at the current business position. If the business is near the stage of exit perhaps the financial losses and negative margins are not a good use of the excess working capital....More
Many farm operators in the Upper Midwest are anticipating significant county-based Ag Risk Coverage (ARC-CO) farm program payments on corn for the 2014 crop year. Some producers are also likely to receive a fairly substantial ARC-CO payment for soybeans for the 2014 marketing year. It was recently revealed that the likely 2014 ARC-CO farm program payments, and any other farm program payments, are likely be subject to Federal government sequestration provisions....More
This is my list of the worst top 10 management practices. There are most certainly other aspects and components that are very important for businesses, but this list demonstrates that discipline is required for success. Even the mundane, seemingly boring tasks and details can be extremely important....More
In the 5 ag stories to read this week, get tips for calibrating your yield monitor and help identifying different stalk rots in your corn fields. Learn about a possible reduction in ARC payments and read some questions and answers about cutting $100/acre in 2016. Finally, enjoy a harvest-time parody from Peterson Farm Bros.
In the past, the lender may have completed the financial records for the borrower in reaction to stiff competition or perhaps, did a simple credit score check before allocating credit. These methods, however, are now history. Lack of complete and accurate financial records is indeed a serious issue; both for the lender and the producer....More
In the 5 ag stories to read this week, check for herbicide resistance in pigweed and get scouting advice. Benchmark your labor efficiency and learn about taking unprofitable land out of your farmed acres. Finally, enjoy a list of reasons why you know you're a farmer.
To avoid losses on 2016 corn and soybeans, ag economist Gary Schnitkey, University of Illinois, recommends growers cut $100 per acre. This suggestion has garnered some questions, and Schnitkey has some answers....More
Increasingly, new lenders will be less familiar with agriculture and farm backgrounds. Further, expect individuals from varied backgrounds, national origins as well as perspectives to enter agricultural lending....More
It appears highly likely that many crop producers in Minnesota and northern Iowa who are enrolled in the county yield-based Ag Risk Coverage (ARC-CO) farm program choice on their corn base acres will earn a significant farm program payment for the 2014 crop year....More
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