The American Farm Bureau reported this week grain farmers should brace for a drop in net incomes this year as the prices for corn, soybeans and wheat have fallen significantly from recent years. The latest Agricultural Prices report, released last week by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, indicated the index of prices received for crop production was down 11 percentage points from the same time last year, while the prices-paid index was unchanged. AFB chief economist Bob Young said “farmers will be tightening up and planning carefully to help control their costs.”
A report last week by the University of Illinois’ Dr. Gary Schnitkey suggested farmers will need to look at four areas in the months and possibly years ahead. These include reducing machinery purchases, closely managing seed, fertilizer and chemical costs, trying to negotiate lower cash rents and reducing family living withdrawals from the farm.