Tight Budgets Likely to Persist in 2017

by Brent Gloy and David Widmar

(Brent and David originally wrote this piece for the Fall issue of The Feed, available here).

With planning for 2017 underway, many are finding the tight budget environment is likely to persist in 2017.  When evaluating the major row crops and major growing regions of the country, our crop budget estimates suggest that 2017 will be another challenging year for row crop producers.

While there has been a significant amount of negative news about the 2016 economic situation, there were some positives.  Perhaps the most important of these is costs of production declines.  This year saw some reductions in fertilizer and fuel prices, as well as, cash rents.  Unfortunately, higher crop prices and additional cost reductions will likely be necessary to restore profitability in 2017. Continue reading

A Look at Cow-Calf Financial Conditions Post-Boom

Cattlephoto

by David A. Widmar

Fifty years from now, agricultural history books will likely devote a chapter to the recent run-up in commodity prices and farm income boom. While much attention has focused on corn and soybean production, cow-calf operators also experienced the historical financial conditions. As the industry begins transitioning away from the boom era, it’s worth pausing to reflect on recent conditions and financial drivers. Continue reading