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Veteran Advisor
Posts: 1,520
Registered: ‎08-04-2010
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Re: So where`s this farming thing headed?

BA, what a difference a decade (+1) makes. I started farming in 2007, and quit in 2018. The funny thing is that commodity prices are nearly the same, its just the inputs that have changed. When I started, I bought Pioneer soybean seed for $30 a bag, now those beans are $60-$70 a bag. In 2007 you could still rent land around here for $75 an acre. Now average land rent is somewhere around $100-$150 an acre for non irrigated ground. Yields have gone up since 2007 and prices are nearly the same, so why are farmers hurting so bad? Well, the "good times" inflated everything, you know this. I'm not sure we see crop farming go the way hogs did in the 90's just yet. There are too many out there willing to run a tractor and combine for darn near nothing, but very few people will smell like hog ***** unless they are making money. When Stamp and Boersen went broke it seemed like somebody else just took on the unprofitable land rent and the process continues. So as long as somebody is willing to raise crops cheap, it makes no sense for the big ag companies like Cargill, ADM, or the Andersons to jump in. The inflated prices over the past decade made for some very greedy operators, so until enough pain is felt to "correct" inflated land rent, equipment purchases, or over the top living expenses, well.... Where's farming headed? IMO its just going to be a stalemate for a while, even if trade with China improves, the fund money is heavily invested elsewhere. Just my $0.02

 

Just a side note. This is the first year in over a decade that I won't plant a crop. To be honest I thought I would miss it more. I don't miss the stress of working a full-time off farm job, farming a couple hundred acres, and trying to run a small seed dealership. I enjoy the livestock trucking that I do now. I haul hogs full-time for an Iowa based hog farm that supply's hogs and feed to farmers here in Michigan. We have a new 10,000 hd a day Clemens plant nearby and I've got a regular run. Life is good!