Ask The Experts take the stage at FSR

By: Wm. Bruce Clevenger, OSU Extension Field Specialist, Farm Management

Agriculture is information driven and growers and industry always have great questions.  Who should you ask for trusted answers?  Ask The Experts at Farm Science Review!  Three days of Experts have been scheduled to take center stage again this year at the 2023 Farm Science Review.  This conversational dive explores hot/current topics between the moderator, Experts, and the audience.  The 30-minute sessions give 15-20 minutes of information from the Experts and 5-10 minutes of Q&A with the audience.  It is the best place to stop and take a sit-down break at FSR.  Grab some food and enjoy.  Experts include ag economists, weather scientists, Women in Ag leaders, veterinarians, agricultural attorneys, agronomists.

Topics include: weather whiplash, empowering Women in Agriculture, USDA Farm Bill, farm property insurance gaps, grain markets, beginning farmer education course, ticks on pasture effecting people and livestock, mold and feed, mental health, carbon markets, an average farm may not be profitable, farm labor, death’s impact on the family business, financial health of Ohio farms, and agronomy vs. economics.

Plan you day(s) at Farm Science Review at: , click Visitor Information, click Mobile App/Digital Directory.


2023 Ask The Expert Schedule

Date Time Speaker Topic
9/19/2023 10:00 Aaron Wilson Weather Whiplash – Dealing with Weather Extremes
10:30 Gigi Neal & Linda Vernon Celebrating 20 Years of Empowering Women in Agriculture – Annie’s Project
11:00 AEDE Dept The Farm Bill and Beyond
12:00 Barry Ward Economic View From The Farmgate
12:30 Robert Moore & Jeff Lewis Farm Insurance – Covering Your Assets
1:00 Seungki Lee How Is The Market Doing?
1:30 Eric Richer What is OSU’s Farm On Course?
2:00 Tim McDermott Managing Asian Longhorned Ticks on Pasture
2:30 Scott Kenney Is Hepatitis E Virus a Risk to Ohioans?
9/20/2023 10:00 Gustavo Schuenemann Molds and Mycotoxins in Cattle
10:30 Mike Estadt How Smart Are Your Commodities?  Carbon Intensity Scores and More
11:00 Clint Schroeder Utilizing Benchmarking Data: It Doesn’t Pay to be Average
11:30 Aaron Wilson Weather Whiplash – Dealing with Weather Extremes
12:00 Barry Ward Economic View From The Farmgate
12:30 Robert Moore & Jeff Lewis Farm Insurance – Covering Your Assets
1:00 Seungki Lee How Is The Market Doing?
1:30 Margaret Jodlowski Who is Working (or Will Work) Ohio’s Farms?
2:00 David Marrison Is Your Farm Business Ready for Your Death?
2:30 Margaret Jodlowski The Farm Bill and Beyond
9/21/2023 10:00 Luciana da Costa One Health and Livestock Farming
10:30 Ani Katchova How Are Ohio Farms Doing Financially?
11:00 Bridget Britton Sit down, Take a load off, and Let’s have a Chat. Life can be Stressful.
11:30 Aaron Wilson Weather Whiplash – Dealing with Weather Extremes
12:00 Barry Ward Economic View From The Farmgate
12:30 Robert Moore & Jeff Lewis Farm Insurance – Covering Your Assets
1:00 David Marrison Is Your Farm Business Ready for Your Death?
1:30 Lindsey, Ortez, Ward Agronomy + Economics = Agronomics. What Comes First in the Equation?


Ask The Experts is located at the corner of Kottman and Friday Avenues, Exhibit Area 425, across from the Firebaugh building.  Seating is available under the tent.

In addition to the Ask The Expert sessions, Review goers can explore OSU Extension Farm Management Resources in the Firebaugh building across from Ask The Expert area all-day, each day of the Review.  OSU Extension Farm Management resources can also be found online at:


OSU Extension Podcast bolsters Farm Management with new Co-Hosts

By Wm. Bruce Clevenger, OSU Ext Field Specialist, Farm Management

OSU Extension has surpassed 100 Episodes on the Agronomy and Farm Management Podcast with the leadership of Amanda Douridas and Elizabeth Hawkins.  Amanda Douridas is the OSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educator in Madison County and Elizabeth Hawkins is an OSU Extension Field Specialist, Agronomic Systems.

On Episode 118, two new co-hosts began to alternate episodes between Agronomy and Farm Management.  Your new farm management co-hosts are Bruce Clevenger, OSU Extension Field Specialist, Farm Management and Josh Winters, OSU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Educator, Jackson County.

Bruce Clevenger and Josh Winters will host Farm Management and Amanda and Elizabeth will continue with Agronomy.  “Farm management is important to your farming operations and Elizabeth and I are excited to partner with Bruce and Josh to enhance the farm management piece of the podcast,” says Amanda.

Episode 118 investigates Farm Insurance Policies with guest Robert Moore, J.D., Attorney, OSU Extension Agricultural and Resource Law Program.  “I would challenge you to find a more important component of farm management, that receives less attention than the farm insurance policy,” Robert Moore.

OSU Extension has many ag law resources available at click on Law Library and Farm Office Blog.  Robert and Peggy Hall author weekly posts and write law bulletins are a wide range of topics from Agritourism to Zoning.

Visit to listen, subscribe, and suggest a topic for future episodes.  Listeners can also search their smart device app for Agronomy and Farm Management to listen and subscribe.

Farm Office Live Webinar Slated for April 21 at 10:00 a.m.

In this month’s webinar, the Farm Office Team will present the following topics:

Legislative and Case Law Update​ (Peggy Hall)

  • Farm Insurance Issues​ (Robert Moore)
  • “What is a ‘Taxable Gross Receipt’ under Ohio’s Commercial Activity Tax?”​ (Jeff Lewis)
  • Inflation and Interest Rates: An Update Including a Closer ​Look at Agricultural Machinery and Equipment​ (Barry Ward)
  • Crop Budgets/Income Outlook for ‘23​ (Barry Ward)
  • Avoid Chance by making 2023 Record Keeping Goals (Bruce Clevenger)

There is no fee to attend this webinar.  However, registration is required at

Check out for all your farm management and ag & resource law needs.

Don’t Miss the March Madness Edition of the Farm Office Live on March 17

The OSU Extension Farm Office team invites you to attend the March Madness Edition of the “Farm Office Live” Webinar on Friday, March 17 from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. This monthly webinar allows Ohio farmers and agribusiness personnel to learn more about current farm management and agricultural law issues.

In this month’s webinar, the Farm Office Team will present the following topics:

  • Federal & State Legislative Update (Peggy Hall)
  • New Postnuptial Agreement Legislation (Robert Moore)
  • Marital and Non-Marital Assets (Robert Moore)
  • Selling Timber- Call Before You Cut (Dave Apsley)
  • Update on Crop Input Costs and Crop Budget Outlook for 2023 (Barry Ward)
  • Sales Tax Exemption Issues (Jeff Lewis)
  • 2023 Spring Crop Insurance Update (Eric Richer)
  • Emergency Relief Program (David Marrison)

There is no fee to attend this webinar.  However, registration is required at

Check out for all your farm management and ag & resource law needs.

Farm Office Live Webinar to be Held on February 17 at 10:00 a.m.

Ohio’s farm and agribusiness industry are invited to attend OSU Extension’s  “Farm Office Live” webinar on Friday, February 17, 2023 from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.  The Farm Office Team providing farm management and agricultural and resource law updates during this webinar.

This month’s session topics and featured speakers include:

Ohio Land Values and Cash Rents- Barry Ward

Making the 2023 Farm Bill Decision- Chris Bruynis

Legislative Update- Peggy Hall

Understanding Farm Insurance Policies – Robert Moore

Farm Accounting: Chart of Accounts with a Purpose- Bruce Clevenger

Pandemic Assistance Revenue Program (PARP) & USDA Disaster Declarations- David Marrison

There is no fee to attend this session. Register or watch replays at:

Agricultural Guestworkers in Ohio: What We Know and Where We’re Going

Please join OSU Extension, with support from the Farm Financial Management and Policy Institute, and the Ohio Commission on Hispanic and Latino Affairs (OCHLA) on n February 15 from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. to learn more about agricultural guest workers in our state.

Each year, OCHLA publishes Latino Community Reports designed to educate and facilitate discussion on particular challenges and opportunities facing Hispanic Ohioans. This season’s publication focuses on the H-2A guest worker population in Ohio. During this event, Anisa Kline, author of the report, will present original research results from her survey of 285 H-2A workers across Ohio.  Following her presentation stakeholders from across sectors will respond to her findings.  These panelists will include

Silvia Hernandez (Starting Point Outreach Center), Dr. José Salinas (Ohio Migrant Education Center), Phil Riehm (Riehm’s Produce), and Dr. Margaret Jodlowski (Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Developmental Economics, OSU). This panel will be moderated by OCHLA’s Executive Director, Lilleana Cavanaugh.

This program will be held  in Room 250A of the Agricultural Administration Building at The Ohio State University located at 2120 Fyffe Road in Columbus, Ohio.  A reception with light refreshments will follow starting at 2:30 p.m. This hybrid event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Click here for registration link.

Click here to access a program flyer about this event


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 ( 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.


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:


America’s Farm and Ranches at a Glance, 2022, United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service, available at:

Regional Ag Outlook and Policy Meetings Set for 2023

By: Mike Estadt, OSU Extension Educator,

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:

January 26th, Wilmington, Ohio

Register at:

Jan 27th, Plain City, Ohio

Register at:

2023 Outlook Breakfast Flyer

February 3rd, Wooster, Ohio

Register at:

February 14th, Jewell, Ohio

Register at:

February 23rd, Circleville, Ohio

Register at:

“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










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

AEDE Outlook and Policy Conference 2022/23 Recap

 The Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE), held its first in-person Outlook and Policy Conference since 2019 on November 15, 2022, at the 4-H Center on Ohio State Campus.  Below are brief summaries of what each speaker presented, along with copies of their presentations.

Energy Market Outlook (Brent Sohngen):

This presentation examined current trends in energy markets, focusing on factors affecting the supply and demand of oil, natural gas, and renewable energy. These factors include global supply considerations related to OPEC, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and resulting economic sanctions, and US energy policy.  Critical US and Ohio energy policies and their effects on market outcomes in energy markets were examined, with respect to recent legislation related to renewable energy sources. The global demand situation also plays a critical role in energy markets and were examined. Finally, the presentation also considered how widespread net zero commitments by many private companies could influence the future evolution of energy markets domestically and internationally. Energy Market Presentation

Ohio Farm Income Outlook (Ani Katchova):

 The presentation showed how the financial outlook for Ohio farms relative to the US and the Midwest region is based on three main aspects of the agricultural economy: farm income, farm assets and financial stress, and agricultural loans and delinquencies. Farm incomes are expected to increase in 2022 attributable to higher cash receipts despite lower expected government payments and higher production expenses.  The rise in inflation and interest rates makes land a rather attractive investment and farmland prices and cash rents are both anticipated to increase this year. In the long run, farm incomes are expected to experience decreases for the next 2-3 years and then remain relatively stable. Despite the current challenges farmers are facing, farm balance sheets are expected to be stronger with a potential decrease in inflation adjusted farm debt in 2022, which, if realized, would be the first decrease since 2012. Therefore, solvency for both US and Ohio farms are expected to improve this year while Ohio farmers are still struggling with profitability, whereas the US and the Midwest farms outperform Ohio farms with higher returns. Finally, agricultural loan demand was higher for the US last year, while it fell for Ohio. Rising interest rates are expected to decrease the agricultural loan volume this year. Loan delinquency rates have remained consistently lower for Ohio farms compared to the national average in the recent past, and this year is no exception.  Farm Income Presentation

 Labor Market Outlook (Margaret Jodlowski):

 The labor market has experienced significant disruption since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. While some industries moved toward recovery, the workers in agriculture and agriculture-adjacent subsectors remain difficult to find and retain. This presentation covered the current state of the labor market, both in Ohio and nationally, with a specific focus on the agricultural value chain. Projections will also be provided for the employment situation for the next year, targeting wages as well as availability of employees for firms in various subsectors of the economy. Ohio, along with many neighboring states, has experienced a dramatic increase in the number of H-2A visa workers; the presentation also discussed these trends in terms of what they imply about the future availability of on-farm workers. There was also a short update on the status and implications of labor-related policies that are currently on the horizon.

Labor Market Presentation

International Economic Outlook (Ian Sheldon):

This presentation outlined how the international economic outlook can be characterized by four key factors:  inflation is at a multidecade high, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the ongoing effects of the pandemic, and weather events in Europe and elsewhere.  In this environment, the presentation laid out current forecasts for lower global growth, reduced inflation, and trade, and how key downside risks such as macroeconomic policy divergence and mistakes, appreciation of the dollar, and the ongoing war in Ukraine, might negatively influence the global economic outlook.  Global Economic Presentation

 Inflation and Macroeconomic Outlook (Mark Partridge):

 Inflation, recession, high interest rates, war, elections, the economy’s recovery from COVID-19 has been a bumpy ride. The Outlook for 2023 is unsurprisingly uncertain. Particularly the commitment of the Federal Reserve to eliminating inflation at any cost is unknown and the course of geopolitical events has been especially unpredictable. The presentation discussed what the tea leaves say about the economy and provided guidance about the risks facing the economy. Macroeconomic Presentation

Grain Market Outlook (Seungki Lee):

 The grain market outlook focused on corn and soybeans, reflecting the significance of these commodities in Ohio agriculture. The presentation covered supply updates and demand forecasts for the 2022-2023 season, based on the November WASDE report. At the beginning, price indices were presented to provide an overview of market circumstances. As harvest season is almost over, USDA’s prospects on demand shifters such as corn feed, ethanol use, exports were highlighted and discussed in detail. Additionally, several potential wild cards – e.g., fertilizer prices, crop progress in Brazil, etc. – that could shake up the market and change the forecasts were discussed.  Grain Market Presentation