The Farm Economy: How Bad Is It?

By: Brent Gloy, Agricultural Economic Insights

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems that there have been a large number of recent articles in the press about the negative situation in the farm economy (for example 1234you get the idea).  This was further driven home when a friend recently called to ask just how bad economic conditions are on the farm. I thought it might be a good time to provide some analysis of the current situation.  Continue reading

Over 1,000 Farmers Share How They Market Grain

By: Sara Schafer, for Farm Journal’s Pork

Successfully marketing grain is one of the biggest challenges most farmers face. Tight margins, weather uncertainty and global trade issues can quickly derail the best laid plans.

Crop prices continue to be the No. 1 challenge for farmers. That’s according to a new report from FarmLogs. In the 2018 State of Grain Marketing Report, the crop marketing software company surveyed more than 1,000 farmers across the country on their grain marketing habits and strategies.  Continue reading

Current Commodity Situation and Outlook for Ohio

By: Ben Brown, Farm Program Manager, Dept. of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, The Ohio State University.

Agriculture is an uncertain industry, where the only certainty is a guarantee that there will indeed be uncertainty and risk. Already in 2018, frequent rains have delayed spring planting and increased the risk of disease and pest pressure. International trade disputes have increased the volatility in grain and livestock markets and international oil supply forecasts have led to unexpected increases in farm input costs. While the drivers of risk fall outside the hands of producers, individuals responds, react, and decide based on the best information available. This report summarizes several of the commodities important to Ohio producers and provides an outlook of supply and demand given current policies and expectations. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Road Safety with Farm Machinery

When I sit down to write an article or column, typically I have an idea of what I would like to say or accomplish, given a current topic or problem. This week was not one of those times as it tough to get excited about 30-degree weather in April or tariffs that may or may not happen on agricultural goods.

With the cold wet weather, it looks like May is going to be a busy month for farmers in the fields. That being said this is an opportune time to consider road and highway safety for the coming growing season. Fred Whitford, Ag Safety Specialist from Purdue University suggests farmer follow these guidelines. Continue reading

Estimates for Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Payments for Program Year 2017

By: Ben Brown, Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics- The Ohio State University, Previously on the Ohio Ag Manager.

Click Here to Access the Entire Article With Figures/Tables

The Agricultural Adjustment Act of 2014 ushered in two programs to the safety net for producers in Ohio and across the country: Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC0-CO) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC). Both programs serve as shallow loss programs protecting against large variations in revenue and price respectively. The two programs operate differently and should not be compared as substitute programs. However, producers were allowed a one time choice at the beginning of the farm bill to enroll each commodity in either ARC-CO or PLC. Participation rates in Ohio largely followed the national participation rates for corn and soybeans but differed for wheat. The national participation rate for wheat favored PLC, whereas in Ohio, producers favored heavily toward ARC-CO. Nonetheless there are producers in Ohio that are enrolled in ARC-CO and PLC for corn, soybeans, and wheat. This report looks toward the end of the marketing year to estimate county level payments for ARC-CO and PLC in Ohio. As a reminder, payments finalized in October 2018 will be for program year 2017. This information will be important for producers and lenders wishing to estimate their autumn cash flow. Continue reading

From Across the Field – Time to Look at Inputs

If you ask a group of my friends to describe me using a handful of words, you will probably get a variety of answers, some of which I am proud of, and some others not fit for print (all in good humor though). One description that would probably come up a few times, of which I am generally proud of, is the word frugal. Frugal means to be economical with regards to money, or as I like to say “thrifty”. Growing up on a small beef and hay operation in the foothills of Appalachia, we didn’t have much of a choice other than to be thrifty when it came to farming. Still to this day the only new piece of farm equipment my father has ever owned was a four-basket hay tedder that he purchased some 15 years ago.  In our farming operation low cost and efficiency was the name of the game, especially when it came to raising forage. The goal was to maximize quality and yield at low costs. Continue reading

2018 Fertilizer Prices Turn Higher

By: David Widmar, Agricultural Economic Insights

In a post from October, we reviewed fertilizer price trends and noted prices, especially for anhydrous ammonia, had continued lowers. Over the last four years, the relevant budget question has been “how much lower” will fertilizer prices be for the upcoming year. While reduced fertilizer prices in 2018 seemed possible just a few months ago, recent data – based on the USDA’s reported fertilizer prices from Illinois – show fertilizer prices have turned higher for 2018. Continue reading

Tax Dilemma: Section 199A Controversy

By Tyne Morgan, US Farm Report

The new tax code is being assessed, and many are calling it a mixed bag for agriculture.

Section 199A is an area that some producers want to see changed, and others want it left untouched.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Ia.) says legislators reached a fix last week, but sources close to the matter say that’s simply not true.

Watch the Farm Journal Report on U.S. Farm Report above.

5 Factors Influencing Grain Markets

By: Sara Schafer, Farm Journal’s Pork

This year’s season-average price for corn is forecast at $3.40, which is up 3% from 2017. The season-average price for soybeans in 2018 is forecast at $9.25, a 0.5% drop from 2017, per USDA’s forecast at its 2018 Agricultural Outlook Forum. ( USDA Photo by Preston Keres )

Trade will remain a critical factor, as the decline in U.S. trade share of the last several years is expected to slow, says Robert Johansson, USDA Chief Economist. © USDA

The official start of spring is just a few weeks away. As the planters start rolling and acres are claimed by crops, how will grain prices respond? Continue reading