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Extension > Agricultural Business Management News > April 2017

Thursday, April 27, 2017

June Women in Ag Network Event Announced!

by Betty Berning
Extension Educator

Women in Agriculture Network (WAGN) will be hosting a farm transition and estate planning program, "Where Do I Begin?", as its next quarterly seminar.

The event takes place June 6, 2017 at the Halstad Legion Recreation Center (580 2nd Ave. West, Halstad, MN 56548).  Registration is at 9AM with the program running from 9:30AM-3:30PM.  The fee is $20, which covers the cost of lunch.  Payment can be made the day of event.

"Many farm families struggle with beginning the process of transitioning the family business to the next generation," shares Gary Hachfeld, Extension Educator. "The process takes communication, trust, and respect as a foundation to begin the task. The 'Farm Business Transition: Where Do I Begin' program addresses many of these items. Program participants will be introduced to ideas, concepts, and tools they can use to help them get started with the process."

Participants will learn about different communications styles; transferring labor, income, management, and assets; retirement considerations for the senior generation; assessing an operation’s financial viability; and goal-setting.  Through fun, hands on exercises, families will learn how to apply these concepts to their farm and begin their own transition and succession plan. 

To register, please visit:

To learn more about Women in Ag Network or this event, please visit:  

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

2016 Southern Minnesota Corn and Soybean Results

By David Bau, Extension Educator

The 2016 FINBIN data base was recently updated with 2016 figures from farmers in Adult Farm Management programs across Minnesota. There were 974 corn farmers in the data base in 2016 in southern Minnesota and 868 soybean farmers. Average gross revenue for Southern Minnesota corn farmers declined from $731.20 in 2015 to $699.91 in 2016 while input costs averaged $753.76 in 2016 compared to $788.59 in 2015. Indicating the net return per acre improved from a loss of $57.39 in 2015 to a loss of $53.76 per acre. The average southern Minnesota corn farmer has lost money since 2014.

Average gross revenue for Southern Minnesota soybean farmers increased to $587.12 in 2016 from $522.28 in 2015 while input costs averaged $503.03 in 2016 compared to $519.07 in 2015. Indicating the net return per acre improved from $3.21 in 2015 to $84.09 per acre in 2016. These average net incomes were negative for 2014 and 2015.

There were records yields in 2015 and again in 2016 for Minnesota and soybeans yields increase in 2016 by 1.4 to an average of 61.25 bushels per acres, while corn yields were down slightly by .7 bushels to an average yield of 204.78 bushels per acre.

Some corn input costs declined, corn seed costs declined by $1.50 per acre to $120.26, and fertilizer declined by $13.50 per acre to $134.14.  Rents declined from an average of $232 in 2015 to $227, a decline of 2.2 percent. Crop insurance, fuel and oil, repairs, hire labor and depreciation were down slightly while crop chemicals, and operating interest increased slightly.

For soybeans, seed, crop chemicals, fuel and oil, and depreciation were down from 2015 to 2016, while fertilizer, repairs, and operating interest increased. Rents declined from an average of $229 in 2015 to $221 in 2016.

Average government payments declined from $49.65 per acre for corn in 2015 to $28.91 in 2016 and beans declined from $46.38 in 2015 to $22.68 in 2016.

Cost of production, on a per bushel basis, declined from $3.85 in 2015 to $3.78 in 2016 for corn and from $8.47 in 2015 to $7.84 for soybeans in 2016.

Unfortunately current price for cash corn is $3.15 and soybeans $8.60 so farmers have to market their crops wisely to achieve these prices. Looking forward to 2017 taking 2016 actual expenses divided by yields of 190 bushels per acre for corn and 52 bushels per acre for soybeans with no government payments expected.  The price needed to cover the input costs with no income for farmer would be $3.97 per bushel and for soybeans $9.67 and 2017 forward contract bids are well below these prices.

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