Ag Policy

  • Good Farmland in Iowa Down 7% Year-over-Year

    The most recent AgLetter from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago indicated that good farm land in Iowa decreased about 7 percent from the third quarter of 2008.  The average decrease for the five state region was 4%.  The good news that the price of good farm land increased by 2% over the second quarter […]

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  • Monsanto = Monopoly?????

     I have read several articles about the Department of Justice possibly looking into anti-trust concerns regarding the concentration of seed genetic traits by Monsanto.  Many experts believe that Monsanto uses their supplier contracts with other seed companies to unlawfully constrain competition in the seed industry. Over the last 12 years, Monsanto has gone from having almost […]

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  • Corporate Farms in Africa

    In the latest issue of Business Week magazine is a very good article on the farm land rush that is occurring in Africa and other under-developed countries around the world. There are many issues surrounding these investments in third word farming enterprises.  Although it may provide jobs for these people, it also is disturbing the […]

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  • Farmland Values Hold Steady, But Credit Conditions are Deteriorating

    After two years of steep increases, it appears that farmland values are either flattening out or starting to drop, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. For example, Nebraska farmland values fell in the third quarter compared to a the third quarter of 2008 by about 5%.  The regional change was slightly lower […]

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  • Crop Insurance Competition – Is it Real?

    Bruce Babcock, an economist at Iowa State University, recently prepared an extensive report on competition in the crop insurance industry.  With all of this year’s crop delays in getting corn and beans harvested this fall, you may get to know your crop insurance agent better in the next couple of months.  You are probably hoping […]

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  • Warren Buys Burlington Northern

    Growing up on our wheat farm in Walla Walla County in Washington state, we had a small railroad trestle that went over Dry Creek behind our house.  The local train would come by in the morning headed to Dayton to pick up freight and then would head back to Walla Walla in the afternoon.  Most […]

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  • Farm Credit Services of America Says 2009 Should be “Respectable Year”

    Farm Credit Services of America indicated that setbacks in the swine, dairy and ethanol industries will trim this year’s financial results below the record 2008 results, however, they indicate that 2009 will still be a ‘respectable year’. This means that patronage dividends will be less than the record $60 million in 2008, but possibly more […]

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  • Federal Reserve Bank Says Land Values are Stabilizing

    The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City issued their second quarter report on thier survey of agricultural credit condtions.  Some highlights of the report are: 1.  Farmland values seem to be stabilizing.  The value of farmland in the second quarter was basically unchanged from the second quarter of 2008.  Irrigated acreage was slightly higher due […]

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  • USDA Says 2009 Farm Income Will be Down!

    The USDA reported on their website on Thursday that they expect net farm income for 2009 to be $54.0 billion down from the record 2008 preliminary estimate of $87.2 billion.  This equates to a net decrease in farm income of $33.2 billion or an over 38% decrease.  What is even more disheartening is that the […]

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  • Where is our Stimulus Package Going

    My colleague, Scott Heintzelman, has a great blog entitled The Exuberant Accountant.  In one of his most recent posts, he references a site that gives a breakdown by state and county of the stimulas money that is being spent on projects, etc. If you are interested to see where your county ranks and where the […]

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