USDA ERS America’s Farms and Ranches at a Glance – 2021 Financial Performance

by: Chris Zoller, Extension Educator, ANR in Tuscarawas County

The United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service (USDA ERS) released this report (https://www.ers.usda.gov/webdocs/publications/105388/eib-247.pdf?v=4061.7) in December 2022.  The United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service America’s Farms and Ranches at a Glance summarizes a number of metrics about U.S. agriculture.  This paper highlights two indicators (Operating Profit Margin and Current Ratio) of the financial performance of U.S. farms and ranches.

Two Definitions

Since the 1970’s, USDA ERS has defined a farm as any place where, each year, $1,000 of agricultural goods were produced and sold.  USDA ERS uses acres of crops and heads of livestock to determine whether the definition is met.  Farm size is measured by Gross Cash Farm Income (GCFI), a measure of revenue, including acres of crops or numbers of head of livestock produced and sold.

Types of Farms

USDA ERS classifies farms into several types.  The following definitions are taken from the report:

Small family farms (GCFI less than $350,000)

  • Retirement farms: Small farms whose principal operators report having retired from farming, though continuing to farm on a small scale.
  • Off-farm-occupation farms: Small farms whose principal operators report a primary occupation other than farming.
  • Farming-occupation farms: Small farms whose principal operators report farming as their primary occupation. Farming-occupation farms are further sorted into two classes:
  • Low-sales: Farms with a GCFI of less than $150,000.
  • Moderate-sales: Farms with a GCFI between $150,000 and $349,999.

Midsize family farms (GCFI between $350,000 and $999,999)

  • Farms with a GCFI between $350,000 and $999,999.

Large-scale family farms (GCFI of $1,000,000 or more)

  • Large farms: Farms with a GCFI between $1,000,000 and $4,999,999.
  • Very large farms: Farms with a GCFI of $5,000,000 or more.

Nonfamily farms

  • Any farm where any operator and any individuals related to them do not own a majority (50 percent) of the business.

The table below summarizes farms by type, number, acres, and value of farm production.

Financial Performance

The Operating Profit Margin (OPM) is one measure of farm financial performance.  The OPM is the share of gross income that is profit.  In 2021, between 50 and 81 percent of small family farms had an OPM in the danger zone (less than 10 percent).

Large family farms, in 2021, were more likely to have a positive OPM (of at least 25 percent).  Positive on-farm income was also more likely for this classification.

Farms in the medium-risk category had an OPM greater than 10 percent and less than 25 percent.  Between 5 percent and 32 percent of these farms were in this category in 2021.

 

The current ratio is another measure of financial performance.  This ratio is calculated by taking current assets divided by current liabilities and is a simple method to determine whether a farm has enough capital to pay current liabilities.  A ratio less than one indicates a farm is unable to pay its current liabilities if all current assets were liquidated.

In 2021, 57 percent of farms had a current ratio greater than one.

In 2021, 52 percent and 47 percent of retirement and off-farm occupation farms, respectively, had the highest percentage of farms with a current ratio of less than 1.  However, many of these farms rely on off-farm income to compensate for the lower current ratio.

Between 23 percent and 25 percent of moderate, mid-size, and large family farms were in danger of being unable to meet current obligations in 2021.

Assistance

If you are interested in learning more about your financial performance, talk to your lender or your local OSU Extension professional about the OSU Extension Farm Business Analysis and Benchmarking Program.  Additional information is available here: https://farmprofitability.osu.edu/.

Reference

America’s Farm and Ranches at a Glance, 2022, United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service, available at: https://www.ers.usda.gov/webdocs/publications/105388/eib-247.pdf?v=4061.7

Regional Ag Outlook and Policy Meetings Set for 2023

By: Mike Estadt, OSU Extension Educator, estadt.3@osu.edu

Ohio State University Extension will present its 2023 Regional Agricultural Outlook and Policy Meetings starting in late January and continuing into February. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, and the main sponsor of the meetings. Economists from the CFAES Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics, Extension specialists in tax policy, ag law and meteorology,  along with other college specialists and invited guests, will serve as speakers.

Held throughout the state, the six outlook meetings will address agricultural topics of interest not only in Ohio, but across the Corn Belt as well. Programs will include presentations on grain market outlook; the dairy industry; agricultural law updates; long-term healthcare; Ohio’s changing climate; energy outlook, international economic outlook, farm real estate values and cash rent trends; farmland preservation outlook; agricultural input price projections; and federal tax updates.

The outlook meetings will be hosted jointly by Union, Madison, and Champaign counties; Pickaway and Ross counties; Clinton and Fayette and individually by Defiance County; Wayne County; and Darke County. Click here for program flyer for the entire series.

Jan 20th, Greenville, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/darkeoutlook

January 26th, Wilmington, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/clintonagoutlook

Jan 27th, Plain City, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/TriCountyOutlook

2023 Outlook Breakfast Flyer

February 3rd, Wooster, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/23wayneoutlook

February 14th, Jewell, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/23defoutlook

February 23rd, Circleville, Ohio

Register at: go.osu.edu/pickawayoutlook

“Outlook meetings have useful take-aways that I have seen farm managers use directly for the upcoming season and planning for the future of the farm business.  Farmers are the CEOs of their farm and collecting unbiased information and putting it into action is essential for success”, according to Bruce Clevenger, Extension Farm Management Field specialist.

For more information regarding a program near you, visit the Ohio Ag Manager website at  https://u.osu.edu/ohioagmanager/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Farm Office Live Webinar Slated for December 16

The Farm Office Team of OSU Extension will be holding their December Farm Office Live Webinar on Friday, December 16 from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. via Zoom. Farm Office Live is a monthly webinar of updates and outlooks of legal, economic, and farm management issues that affect Ohio agriculture.

In this webinar, the teaching team of Peggy Hall and Robert Moore (Attorneys from the OSU Agricultural and Resource Law Program) and Eric Richer and David Marrison (Field Specialists, Farm Management) will share the following topics:

  • Federal and State Legislative and Legal Updates
  • Time to Review Estate Plans
  • Year End Balance Sheet Strategies
  •  Federal Farm Program Updates
  • Food Safety Certification for Specialty Crops Program
  • Emergency Relief Programs
  • House Bill 95 Beginner Tax Credit Update
  • Upcoming Programs

The webinar is free.  Registration and more details can be made at go.osu.edu/farmofficelive

Ag Lender Seminars Offered in October

By Wm. Bruce Clevenger, Ken Ford, Grant Davis, Shelby Tedrow, and Frank Becker

Ohio State University Extension has scheduled four seminars in Ohio for Agricultural Lenders. The dates are Tuesday, October 18th in Ottawa, Ohio; Thursday, October 20 in Urbana, Ohio; Thursday, October 20 in Washington Court House, OH, and Friday, October 21st in Wooster, OH.

These seminars are excellent professional development opportunities for Lenders, Farm Service Agency personnel, county Extension Educators and others to learn about OSU Extension research, outreach programs and current agricultural topics of interest across the state.

2022 Topics and Speakers by Location

Ottawa, OH – October 18th, Putnam Co. Educational Service Center, 124 Putman Parkway, Ottawa, OH  45875

  • Farm Service Agency Loan Program Update – Kurt Leber, Northwest Ohio FSA, District Director – Farm Loan and Farm Program
  • Long Term Care Impacts on Farming Operations – Robert Moore, J.D., Ohio State University Extension, Attorney, OSU Agricultural & Resource Law Program
  • Beef and Small Ruminant Enterprise Opportunities – Garth Ruff, Ohio State University Extension, Field Specialist, Beef Cattle
  • Farm Business Analysis with FINPACK and OSUE Farm Office – Clint Schroeder, Ohio State University Extension, Program Coordinator, Farm Business Analysis
  • Examining Land Values, Rents, Crop Input Costs & Margins & New Tax Policy- Barry Ward, Ohio State University Extension, Leader – Production Business Management & Director – OSU Income Tax Schools
  • Ag Commodity Grain Markets: Trends and Prospects – Seungki Lee, PhD, Ohio State University, Dept of Agricultural, Environmental, & Development Economics

Urbana, OH – October 20th, Champaign Co. Community Center Auditorium, 1512 South US Highway 68, Urbana, OH  43078

  • Farm Service Agency Update – Shari Deao, Champaign County Director, FSA
  • Examining Land Values, Rents, Crop Input Costs & Margins in 2023 – Barry Ward, Ohio State University Extension, Leader – Production Business Management & Director – OSU Income Tax Schools
  • Mental Health and the Agriculture Community – Bridget Britton, Behavioral Health Field Specialist, Ag & Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension
  • Update on Alternative Energy in Ohio – Eric Romich, Energy Development Field Specialist, Ohio State University Extension
  • Long Term Care Impacts on Farming Operations – Robert Moore, J.D., Ohio State University Extension, Attorney, OSU Agricultural & Resource Law Program

Washington Court House, OH – October 20th, Fayette County Agricultural Center, 1415 US Hwy 22 SW, Washington Court House, OH  43160

  • Farm Service Agency Update – Katie Maust, Fayette County Director, FSA
  • Update on Alternative Energy in Ohio – Eric Romich, Ohio State University Extension, Field Specialist Energy Development
  • Long Term Care Impacts on Farming Operations – Robert Moore, J.D., Ohio State University Extension, Attorney, OSU Agricultural & Resource Law Program
  • Examining Land Values, Rents, Crop Input Costs & Margins & New Tax Policy- Barry Ward, Ohio State University Extension, Leader – Production Business Management & Director – OSU Income Tax Schools
  • Mental Health and the Agriculture Community – Bridget Britton, Behavioral Health Field Specialist, Ag & Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension

Wooster, OH – October 21st, – Buckeye Agricultural Museum, 877 West Old Lincoln Way, Wooster, OH  44691

  • Timber Management – John Kehn, State Service Forester, Ohio Dept of Natural Resources – Division of Forestry
  • Dairy Economics – Jason Hartschuh, Ohio State University Extension, Extension Educator Crawford County
  • Beef and Small Ruminant Enterprise Opportunities – Garth Ruff, Ohio State University Extension, Field Specialist, Beef Cattle
  • Examining Land Values, Rents, Crop Input Costs & Margins & New Tax Policy- Barry Ward, Ohio State University Extension, Leader – Production Business Management & Director – OSU Income Tax Schools
  • Farm Succession Planning – David Marrison, Ohio State University Extension, Extension Educator Coshocton County

The registration cost to attend one of the Ag Lender Seminars is $75.00 and the registration deadline is one week prior to the seminar you are attending. Payments can be made by check by mail or by credit card (by phone only to 419-782-4771). Registration forms are available online at: https://u.osu.edu/aglenderseminars/

Registration questions can be directed to OSU Extension Defiance County 419-782-4771 or email clevenger.10@osu.edu

OSU Extension conducts the seminars from input from Ag Lenders, County Extension Educators and Extension Specialists.  The seminars are designed to provide information that Ag Lenders will use directly with their customers, indirectly within the lending industry, and as professional development for current issues and trends in production agriculture.  OSU Extension has been offering Ag Lenders seminars for nearly 30 years.

Ohio State University (OSU) Extension’s Ohio Women in Agriculture Program announces opportunities to Learn, Grow, Connect, Inspire and Empower at the 2022 Farm Science Review!

Some of the best conversations and discussions have occurred around the family kitchen table. Grab a cup of your favorite beverage, lunch, or snack and join us from our kitchen table or yours to engage in conversations in-person or “virtually” on September 20, 21, and 22, 2022 for “Kitchen Table Conversations” hosted by the Ohio Women in Agriculture of Ohio State University Extension.

These sessions are offered during the Farm Science Review daily from 11:30 AM-12:30 PM. In-person sessions will be located on the north side of the Firebaugh Building at 384 Friday Avenue at our kitchen table. ZOOM session registration is required to participate. Register @ https://go.osu.edu/2022fsrkitchentableconversation

Programs will focus on key topics related to health, marketing, finance, legal, and production for women in agriculture.  Each topic will feature a leading expert and moderators to generate dialogue and empower discussion among participants.  A list of daily topics and leaders is provided below.

TUESDAY

When Death Happens- Managing the Farm Without Your Business Partner

Death can change everything, especially your ability to manage the farm without your business partner.  How can you better prepare to manage your farm business without your spouse or sibling?  Learn some strategies that can help you plan for the challenge of managing a farm alone.

SPEAKER: David Marrison, OSU Extension Educator, Coshocton County

WEDNESDAY

Female Farmer Financing Options: Opportunities with USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Loans

Come participate in this kitchen table conversation on how you can find unique farmland financing options for females, veterans, and minority farmers. Learn a little bit more about the requirements, normal rates, and roles.

SPEAKER: Eric Richer, OSU Extension Educator, Fulton County

THURSDAY

The Devil is in the Details: Communication and Record Keeping for Improving Farm Management

Family farms are only as good as their communication.  A record-keeping system is a valuable form of communication when the level of detail fits the needs of the farm decision-makers.  Useful record keeping can move a farm management team beyond the basic tax return to exploring problem-solving and strengthening the family farm business.

SPEAKER: Bruce Clevenger, OSU Extension Educator, Defiance County

Your host for the event will be Extension Professionals of the OSU Extension Ohio Women in Agriculture Team. Visit our display inside the Firebaugh Building for additional women in agriculture opportunities.

For more information: Gigi Neal, neal.331@osu.edu, 513-732-7070 or Heather Neikirk, neikirk.2@osu.edu, 234-348-6145

Blog site: u.osu.edu/ohwomeninag

 

Western Ohio Cropland Values and Cash Rents 2021-22

by: Barry Ward, Leader, Production Business Management, Director, OSU Income Tax Schools, OSU Extension, Agriculture & Natural Resources

High crop prices and COVID era legislative ad-hoc government payments coupled with lower interest rates (among other factors) over the last 2 and half years have given strength to farmland markets. Higher input costs over the last year and half together with rising interest rates have offset some of this strength but farmland values continue to increase. Many of these same factors have given strength to the farmland rental markets which have also seen increases this last year and will likely see additional increases in 2022.

According to the Western Ohio Cropland Values and Cash Rents Survey, cropland values in western Ohio are expected to increase in 2022 by 8.0 to 11.3 percent depending on the region and land class. This is on top of increases from 2020 to 2021 of 7.2 to 26.6 percent depending on region and productivity class.

Cash rents are expected to increase from 5.8 to 6.8 percent depending on the region and land class. This is on top of rental increases of 1.5 to 7.7 percent from 2020 to 2021.

Ohio Cropland Values and Cash Rent

Ohio cropland varies significantly in its production capabilities and, consequently, cropland values and cash rents vary widely throughout the state. Generally, western Ohio cropland values and cash rents differ from much of southern and eastern Ohio cropland values and cash rents. The primary factors affecting these values and rents are land productivity and potential crop return, and the variability of those crop returns. Soils, fertility and drainage/irrigation capabilities are primary factors that most influence land productivity, crop return and variability of those crop returns.

Other factors impacting land values and cash rents may include field size and shape, field accessibility, market access, local market prices, field perimeter characteristics and potential for wildlife damage, buildings and grain storage, previous tillage system and crops, tolerant/resistant weed populations, USDA Program Yields, population density, and competition for the cropland in a region. Factors specific to cash rental rates may include services provided by the operator and specific conditions of the lease. This fact sheet summarizes data collected for western Ohio cropland values and cash rents.

Study Results 

The Western Ohio Cropland Values and Cash Rents study was conducted from January through April in 2022. The opinion-based study surveyed professionals with a knowledge of Ohio’s cropland values and rental rates. Professionals surveyed were rural appraisers, agricultural lenders, professional farm managers, ag business professionals, OSU Extension educators, farmers, landowners, and Farm Service Agency personnel.

Respondents were asked to group their estimates based on three land quality classes: average, top, and poor. Within each land-quality class, respondents were asked to estimate average corn and soybean yields for a five-year period based on typical farming practices. Survey respondents were also asked to estimate current bare cropland values and cash rents negotiated in the current or recent year for each land-quality class. Survey results are summarized for western Ohio with regional summaries (subsets of western Ohio) for northwest Ohio and southwest Ohio.

The complete survey summary can be accessed and downloaded at our Farm Office page:

https://farmoffice.osu.edu/farm-management-tools/farm-management-publications/cash-rents

 

Ohio Farm Custom Rates 2022

By: Barry Ward, Leader, Production Business Management, OSU Extension, Agriculture and Natural Resources; John Barker, Extension Educator Agriculture/Amos Program, Ohio State University Extension Knox County and Eric Richer, Extension Educator Agriculture & Natural Resources, Ohio State University Extension Fulton County

Farming is a complex business and many Ohio farmers utilize outside assistance for specific farm-related work. This option is appealing for tasks requiring specialized equipment or technical expertise. Often, having someone else with specialized tools perform tasks is more cost effective and saves time. Farm work completed by others is often referred to as “custom farm work” or more simply, “custom work”. A “custom rate” is the amount agreed upon by both parties to be paid by the custom work customer to the custom work provider.

Ohio Farm Custom Rates

The “Ohio Farm Custom Rates 2022” publication reports custom rates based on a statewide survey of 223 farmers, custom operators, farm managers, and landowners conducted in 2022. These rates, except where noted, include the implement and tractor if required, all variable machinery costs such as fuel, oil, lube, twine, etc., and labor for the operation.

Some custom rates published in this study vary widely, possibly influenced by:

  • Type or size of equipment used (e.g. 20-shank chisel plow versus a 9-shank)
  • Size and shape of fields,
  • Condition of the crop (for harvesting operations)
  • Skill level of labor
  • Amount of labor needed in relation to the equipment capabilities
  • Cost margin differences for full-time custom operators compared to farmers supplementing current income

Some custom rates reflect discounted rates as the parties involved have family or community relationships, Discounted rates may also occur when the custom work provider is attempting to strengthen a relationship to help secure the custom farmed land in a future purchase, cash rental or other rental agreement. Some providers charge differently because they are simply attempting to spread their fixed costs over more acreage to decrease fixed costs per acre and are willing to forgo complete cost recovery.

New this year, the number of responses for each operation has been added to the data presented. In cases where there were too few responses to statistically analyze, summary statistics are not presented.

Charges may be added if the custom provider considers a job abnormal such as distance from the operator’s base location, difficulty of terrain, amount of product or labor involved with the operation, or other special requirements of the custom work customer.

The data from this survey are intended to show a representative farming industry cost for specified machines and operations in Ohio. As a custom farm work provider, the average rates reported in this publication may not cover your total costs for performing the custom service. As a customer, you may not be able to hire a custom service for the average rate published in this factsheet.

It is recommended that you calculate your own costs carefully before determining the custom rate to charge or pay. It may be helpful to compare the custom rates reported in this fact sheet with machinery costs calculated by economic engineering models available online. The following resources are available to help you calculate and consider the total costs of performing a given machinery operation.

Farm Machinery Cost Estimates, available by searching University of Minnesota.

Illinois Farm Management Handbook, available by searching University of Illinois farmdoc.

Estimating Farm Machinery Costs, available by searching Iowa State University agriculture decision maker and machinery management.

Fuel price changes may cause some uncertainty in setting a custom rate. Significant volatility in diesel price over the last several months has caused some concern for custom rate providers that seek to cover all or most of the costs associated with custom farm operations. The approximate price of diesel fuel during the survey period ranged from $4.50 – $5.25 per gallon for off-road (farm) usage. As a custom farm work provider, if you feel that your rate doesn’t capture your full costs due to fuel price increases you might consider a custom rate increase or fuel surcharge based on the increase in fuel costs.

For example, let’s assume the rate you planned to charge for a chisel plow operation was based on $4.50 per gallon diesel costs and the current on-farm diesel price is $5.50 per gallon. This is a $1 per gallon increase. The chisel plow operation uses 1.15 gallons of fuel per acre so the added fuel surcharge could be set at $1.15 per acre (1.15 gallons x $1 gallon).

The complete “Ohio Farm Custom Rates 2022” publication is available online at the Farm Office website:

https://farmoffice.osu.edu/farm-management/custom-rates-and-machinery-costs

 

 

 

Farm Service Agency Loans Available for Beginning Farmers

by: Chris Zoller, Extension Educator, ANR in Tuscarawas County

Building and managing a successful farm is a significant financial investment and can be especially challenging for those just beginning, especially those unable to obtain financing through commercial lenders.  The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) makes and guarantees loans to beginning farmers.

Each year money is allocated to FSA for farm ownership and farm operating loans for beginning farmers.  These loan programs are important as beginning farmers have historically experienced more difficulty obtaining financial assistance.

What is a Beginning Farmer?

A beginning farmer is an individual or entity who:

  • Has not operated a farm for more than 10 years
  • Substantially participates in the operation
  • For farm ownership loans, the applicant cannot own a farm greater than 30 percent of the average size farm in the county, at the time of application
  • If the applicant is an entity, all members must be related by blood or marriage, and all members must be eligible beginning farmers

Additionally, beginning farmers must meet the loan eligibility requirements for the program.

Maximum Loan Amounts

The Farm Service Agency makes available a variety of loans, each with a different maximum loan amount.  The loan types and maximum allowable amounts are provided below:

  • Direct farm ownership: $600,000
  • Direct operating loan: $400,000
  • Microloan: $50,000 each for operating and farm ownership
  • Guaranteed farm ownership or operating loan: $1,825,000
  • EZ Guarantee: $100,000 ($50,000 if the lender is a micro lender)

Down Payment Program

FSA has a special loan program to assist beginning farmers purchase a farm.  Retiring farmers may use this program to transfer their land to future generations.  Requirements are listed here:

  • Cash down payment of at least 5% of the purchase price
  • Loan amount limited to 45% of the least of:
    • Purchase price of the farm
    • Appraised value of the farm or
  • $ 667,000 ($300,150) maximum
  • 20 year loan term
  • Interest rate is 4% below the direct farm ownership rate, but no lower than 1.5%

The remaining balance may be obtained from a commercial lender or private party.  FSA can guarantee up to 95% of the loan if financing is obtained from a commercial lender.  Participating lenders do not have to pay a loan guarantee fee.

If financing is secured from participating lenders, the amortization period must be at least 30 years and cannot have a balloon payment due within the first 20 years of the loan.

Additional Options to Access Capital

Beginning farmers may be interested in participating in a joint financing arrangement.  FSA will lend up to 50% of the amount financed and another lender provides the remaining percentage.  These funds can be used for any authorized farm ownership purpose.  The interest rate is two percent less than the direct ownership rate but not lower than 2.5%.  The term of the loan will not exceed 40 years or the useful life of the security.

Land Contract Guarantees

FSA does provide financial guarantees for land sales to beginning farmers.  The seller may request either of the following:

  • Prompt Payment Guarantee: A guarantee up to the amount of three amortized annual installments plus the cost of any related real estate taxes and insurance.
  • Standard Guarantee: A guarantee of 90% of the outstanding principal balance under the land contract.

The farm purchase price cannot exceed $500,000 or the market value of the property.  The buyer is required to provide a minimum down payment of 5% of the purchase price of the farm.  The interest rate is fixed at a rate not to exceed the direct farm ownership loan interest rate in effect at the time the guarantee is issued, plus three percentage points.  The guarantee period is 10 years.  Contract payments must be amortized a minimum of 20 years.

How to Apply

Direct loans are available through your local Farm Service Agency office.  For guaranteed loans, you must apply with a commercial lender who participated in the Guaranteed Loan Program.  Your local FSA office can provide a list of participating institutions.

Locating Your FSA Office

If you are unsure which FSA office services your county, please visit: https://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?state=oh&agency=fsa

Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey 2022 Responses – Last Call

by: Barry Ward, Leader, Production Business Management, OSU Extension, Agriculture & Natural Resources

The Ohio Farm Custom Rates Survey 2022 data collection has launched. The online survey for 2022 is available at: https://go.osu.edu/ohiofarmcustomratesurvey2022

If you perform custom farm work or pay for these services, we kindly ask you to complete the Ohio Farm Custom Rate Survey for 2022.

A large number of Ohio farmers hire machinery operations and other farm related work to be completed by others. This is often due to lack of proper equipment, lack of time or lack of expertise for a particular operation.  Many farm business owners do not own equipment for every possible job that they may encounter in the course of operating a farm and may, instead of purchasing the equipment needed, seek out someone with the proper tools necessary to complete the job. This farm work completed by others is often referred to as “custom farm work” or more simply “custom work”. A “custom rate” is the amount agreed upon by both parties to be paid by the custom work customer to the custom work provider.

Custom farming providers and customers often negotiate an agreeable custom farming machinery rate by utilizing Extension surveys results as a starting point. Ohio State University Extension collects surveys and publishes survey results from the Ohio Farm Custom Survey every other year. Past survey summaries can be found at: https://farmoffice.osu.edu/farm-mgt-tools/custom-rates-and-machinery-costs

This year we are updating our published custom farm rates for Ohio.

We kindly request your assistance in securing up-to-date information about farm custom work rates, machinery and building rental rates and hired labor costs in Ohio.

This year we have an online survey set up that anyone can access. We would ask that you respond even if you know only a few rates.  We want information on actual rates, either what you paid to hire custom work or what you charged if you perform custom work. Custom Rates should include all ownership costs of implement & tractor (if needed), operator labor, fuel and lube. If fuel is not included in your custom rate charge there is a place on the survey to indicate this.

 You may access the survey at: https://go.osu.edu/ohiofarmcustomratesurvey2022

If you prefer a document that you can print out and fill out by hand to return, email Barry Ward at ward.8@osu.edu

The deadline to complete the survey is March 31, 2022.

 

 

 

 

USDA Report: Small Family Farms Produce Majority of Poultry and Eggs, and Hay

by: Chris Zoller, Extension Educator, ANR in Tuscarawas County &  Tony Nye, Extension Educator, ANR in Clinton County

The United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service (USDA ERS), in their December 2021 Charts of Note, examined the value of production of seven commodities.  The purpose of the analysis was to determine the percentage of each by type (family and non-family farms) and size of operation.

The USDA ERS defines family farms as those where the principal operator and those associated with the principal operator own most of the business.  USDA ERS defines nonfamily farms as those where the principal operator and those related to the principal operator do not own a majority of the business.

USDA ERS classifies family farms by size, according to gross cash farm income (GCFI):

  • Small family farms – GCFI less than $350,000
  • Midsize family farms – between $350,000 and $999,999 in GCFI
  • Large-scale family farms – $1 million or more in GCFI

The table below summarizes the value of production by type and size of operation.  Small family farms produced the majority of hay (59%) and poultry and eggs (49%) in 2020.  Small family farms also accounted for just over one-quarter of beef production.

 

Ohio State University Extension works with Small Farm Producers throughout Ohio.

Since 2005, Ohio State has been addressing producer needs for small farm production. Our two main efforts include an eight-week Small Farm College course and the Small Farm Conference.

The Mission of OSU Extension Small Farm Programs:

To provide a greater understanding of production practices, economics of land use choices, assessment of personal and natural resources, marketing alternatives, and the identification of sources of assistance for new and small farms in Ohio.

Small Farm Program Objectives:

  • To improve the economic development of small farms in Ohio.
  • To help small farm landowners and families diversify their opportunities into successful new enterprises and new markets.
  • To improve agricultural literacy among small farm landowners not actively involved in agricultural production.

Small Farm Conference

‘Sowing Seeds for Success’  –  the 2022 Small Farm Conference is scheduled for March 12th from 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at the Mansfield OSU Campus in Ovalwood Hall.  The campus is just minutes from I-71 and US Rt 30.

This conference is for small farm owners who want to learn more about how to make their farms work better for them or expand their operations. This conference is also useful for those new to agriculture who are looking for ways to utilize acreage. Landowners can attend workshops and presentations on these topics:

    • Horticulture
    • Produce Production
    • Natural Resources
    • Livestock
    • Specialty Crops
    • Farm Management
    • Marketing
    • Miscellaneous Topics

This conference is designed to help participants learn tips and techniques for diversifying their opportunities into successful new enterprises and markets. Combined with a trade show, participants learn new ways to improve economic growth and development on their farms.

Cost is $75.00 per person. Please visit: https://morrow.osu.edu/program-areas/agriculture-and-natural-resources/small-farm-conference  for conference and registration details or call OSU Extension Morrow County 419-947-1070.

The New and Small Farm College

The New and Small Farm College is a seven-week program that introduces new and seasoned farmers to a wide variety of topics. The program teaches participants how to set goals, plan, budget, how to manage financial and farm records, and where to find resources if they choose to start a small farming operation. Other subjects include legal issues, farm insurance and marketing.

Coming in August 2022, this program will be available.  Watch this website for updates on times and locations: https://u.osu.edu/gofarmohio/programs/new-and-small-farm-college/

The cost to attend is $125 and includes a resource binder, meals, all programs including Farm Science Review admission, and a soil test. Additional family members can register for $100 per person (excludes binder).