The University of Illinois’ Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics set its corn and soybean break-even prices for 2022.
Break-even prices farmers need to reach to cover their total cost of production are projected at $4.73 a bushel for corn and $11.06 a bushel for soybeans. These break-even prices are quite high compared to historical levels.
From 2013 to 2021, actual break-even prices for corn averaged $4.00 a bushel, well below the 2022 projected level. The break-even prices for soybeans averaged $8.92 a bushel, well below the 2022 level.
While many recent bids were above break-even levels, the higher break-evens present a risk in 2022 as corn and soybean production costs will increase to record levels.
The factors pushing costs higher include high commodity prices, inflation pressures, and supply disruptions. By far, the input with the biggest cost increase will be fertilizer.
The University of Illinois says commodity pricing some grain at current levels would be prudent.