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Minnesota County Cropland Rental Rates Available

By David Bau, Extension Educator

Average, Median, Ten Percent Lowest Average Rents and Ten Percent Highest Average Rents are listed by county in recently release publication titled “Cropland Rental Rates for Minnesota Counties”.  The rental rates come from rents paid by farmers who participate in Adult Farm Management programs across Minnesota. This publication provides a historical perspective on rental rates paid by a group of Minnesota farmers and trends in those rental rates over the past five years. This information is meant as a guide and starting point. The information and data is not meant to establish, determine, set, fix, or even hint at what actual rents should be. It is simply a reporting of historical land rental rates in Minnesota.

Historical rental data is included for years 2013 through 2017. Weighted average rental rates are listed by county for each year. The 2017 data also includes the median cash rent and the 10th and 90th percentile range, explained under “data results”.  There is really no way to statistically project future rental rates. Keep in mind the numbers listed are weighted averages. That means there are rents both above and below the numbers listed. Again, these numbers are merely a starting point.

Also included is the 2017 county rental data gathered by the USDA National Ag Statistical Service (NASS) in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. The USDA/NASS data is collected by mail-out survey and the 2018 results will be available in September 2018. This document will be updated to include the new NASS numbers at that time. 

The land rental data shown in the publication is extracted from FINBIN, a database of farm record summaries of over 2,000 Minnesota farms. The farmers participate in the Minnesota State College Farm Business Management program as well the Southwestern Minnesota Farm Business Management Association. The rental rates are based on analysis of the financial records of participating farmers and represent the actual rents paid for the years listed.

To compile this report, rental rates are extracted for cash rented land. All row crop acres, small grain acres, canning crop acres, etc. are included in the data analysis. Not included in the analysis are acres allocated to pasture, aftermath grazing, hay and haylage acres, CRP acres, fallow, and prevented planted acres.  Data is organized by county. Counties with a minimum of 10 farms with cash rented acreage are included. If a given county does not have rent data listed for 2012-2017, there were not enough farms reporting data.

The publication can be found at:

Regional numbers are included in the publication and listed below indicate the total percentage change in land rental rates for the last five years from 2012 through 2017 and the last column is the change from 2016 to 2107. As shown in table 5 of the 8 regions had increased in the last five years, while only two regions had increased from 2016 to 2017.

Total Percent Change in Land Rental Rates
Northwest 14.4% -0.6%
West Central 9.5% 4.9%
Central 0.7% -3.2%
East Central 42.9% 3.9%
Southwest -1.0% -4.2%
South Central -3.2% -4.3%
Southeast -3.0% -3.3%
State 4.1% -3.9%

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