In the 5 ag stories to read this week, take in some online agronomy classes and get new tips for phosphorus application. Read about the latest rules for drone use and get out to sample for SCN. Finally, take some time to set Subway straight and share some reliable farm information about antibiotic use in livestock.
As economic scenarios continue to play out in the emerging nations, it will be interesting to see which options the pilots of our economy choose with political dysfunction, global military and social tensions on the rise....More
The increased corn and soybean yields in the latest USDA Report was more than offset by reductions in the estimated harvested acreage for both crops, and resulted in decreases in the expected 2014 crop production levels, compared to the September report....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.
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
Straight lines are one of the first “gotchas” when studying a yield map. The cause for yield differences that follow straight lines are always man-made! Seeing a straight line on a yield map instantly leads to digging deeper....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
I just returned from the Farm Progress Show with even more confirmation that farmer adoption of data services will be a huge game-changer. Several innovative/early adopter farmers I spoke with (who are playing with nitrogen management services from DuPont Pioneer, Monsanto/Climate Corp. and others) have found great knowledge from the data, while being realistic about current data accuracy....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.
Using the TrueHarvest yield benchmarking service offered through his co-op, MKC, Blew knows that the combination of variable-rate technologies he used on an irrigated field paid off handsomely in 2014. Following harvest in 2015, he will use the service across the entire operation to assess how management practices on those fields stack up....More
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
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
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
A well-calibrated yield monitor can assess yields to within +/- 3%, says Matt Darr, a precision agriculture specialist at Iowa State University. A poorly calibrated monitor can have a margin of error of +/- 10%, particularly in fields where yields vary significantly....More
Since 2005, we’ve been checking our work with our trademark Learning Blocks and we have proved, and continue to prove every year, that variable rate applications frequently pay. It’s not 100% but given the complexity of our modern crop production the results from millions of acres are amazing....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
FarmLogs is known for their multi-functional mobile app. The company continues to bring new digital products to market, in hopes of making processes simpler and more efficient. And they've accomplished that with their new product: FarmLogs Flow, which creates yield maps....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
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
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