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Farm Industry Trends

  • Does Your Banker Understand Hedging

    For a farmer to be successful in using a hedging strategy, they must have an agricultural lender that understands and promotes hedging.  Many lenders are willing to finance margin accounts for bonafide hedgers since they understand that the farmer is reducing their exposure to pricing risk.  Some will also lend a larger percentage of the […]

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  • End of Year Reflections

     The idea for this blog was a glimmer in my mind at the end of 2008.  While surfing on the web, I found the Golden Practices web-site that listed different industry specific blogs.  This spurred me to action and with their help, we had a fully up and running blog site in the first 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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  • Corn Harvest is Not Done

    I was traveling over the last couple of days to the Mid-West.  I spent part of my time driving from Kansas City to Davenport, Iowa and then from there to Hannibal, Missouri and then back to Kansas City.  While on this trip, I noticed that there was still a lot of corn that was not […]

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  • Will the Dairy Price Incease Save the Farmers in Time

    The National Agricultural Bankers Conference is meeting in San Antonio, Texas this week.  Marcia Zarley from DTN/The Progressive Farmer has a good overview of what the bankers are talking about.  Farmers who are in the dairy and pork industry are really feeling the pinch of low milk and pork prices right now.  Many of 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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  • 5 + 5 + 5 = Home Run

    Many farmers do a good job of benchmarking their operations to other operations in the same state of region.  By doing this benchmarking, they are able to see where they are either behind or ahead of other farmers.  Some get discouraged trying to get out of the middle range into the top 20%.  Most think […]

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  • Living With A Wind Turbine in Your Back Yard

    Most of the wind turbines located in the United States are probably located on farm land or near farm land.  DTN – The Progressive Farmer just posted a recent article on “living in the shadow of wind generators”.  This posting had several points regarding putting wind turbines on your land.  Some of the key thoughts […]

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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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