Sustainable Ag 101: Carbon Farming Brings Extra Income and Environmental Benefits
August 31, 2021
This is the seventh and final installment of our series on sustainable farming practices, where we take a closer look at how each practice can bring long-term economic and environmental benefits.&n... Continue reading
Sustainable Ag 101: 4Rs Protect the Earth and Farmers’ Budgets
August 25, 2021
the fifth installment of our series on sustainable farming practices, where we
take a closer look at how each practice can bring long-term economic and
If you purchased fertilizer this spring, you
probably experienced sticker shock.
Fertilizer prices jumped significantly from
last fall. According to the University of Illinois’ farmdoc daily, the price of anhydrous ammonia
was 2 per ton in September 2020. By April 2... Continue reading
Sustainable Ag 101: Taking Urban Farms Indoors Can Maximize Resources and Production
August 10, 2021
the sixth installment of our series on sustainable farming practices, where we
take a closer look at how each practice can bring long-term economic and
When we think of agriculture, we often picture
large fields of row crops or green pastures stretching into the horizon. For
urban farmers, it’s a very different reality.
Urban farmers face unique challenges in being
profitable and productive... Continue reading
POLITICAL UNCERTAINTY PROMPTS FARM DEBT REVIEW
August 02, 2021
As farmers and agribusinesses owners across the country seek
certainty in the post-pandemic economic outlook, a .5 trillion investment
proposal by the White House casts a huge shadow over the economy.
At this point, the uncertainty is so widespread that, no
matter where you sit on the political spectrum, it is impossible to predict the
outcome of President Joe Biden’s proposed stimulus investment package. There
are those who question whether the package ever will get through Congress.
H... Continue reading
Now is the time to lock in low rates
KEY AG INSIGHTS FROM THE JULY FEDERAL RESERVE BEIGE BOOK
July 22, 2021
July Federal Reserve Beige Book
Coming out of a pandemic, the ag financial landscape looks
pretty good, according to Federal Reserve Beige Book report which is issued by
the banks that make up the Federal Reserve System. However, there are more wild
cards out there than up a riverboat gambler’s sleeve. “Labor, especially in the
segment that affects agriculture, is problematic,” says Tom Stenson, executive
vice president at Conterra Ag Capital. In addition, prod... Continue reading
Read the latest in ag finance. This insights summary breaks down the newly released Federal Reserve Beige Book.
Maintain Communication During Times of Drought
July 21, 2021
to your operation can be difficult to deal with, especially those that
fall out of your control. Whether
it be floods, hail, or drought; carefully planning your
next steps is crucial for your operational health.
the historic drought continues to worsen through the western half of the United
States, tough choices are being made. It might be culling a he... Continue reading
How Water Effects Land Values in California
July 13, 2021
Land values in California are becoming more unpredictable
as the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) is threatening groundwater
pumping in the coming years. As we are
embracing another year of exceptional drought in most areas of California and there
will be little to no allocation of surface water in many areas, farmers and
ranchers are reminded just how important water is.
As noted in a previous
article, surface water supply will often vary depending on climate
an... Continue reading
How Family Living Expenses Effect the Farm Loan Process
July 06, 2021
metrics are commonly evaluated during the farm loan process. Often times, cash
flow and debt to asset is far easier to explain than family living expenses.
Questions regarding what needs to be estimated, or even what exactly family living cost is arise.
living is exactly that, items that are included in the basic family budget:
housing, food, childcare, transportation, health care, other necessities, and
taxes. From a financial standpoint, why are these items tracked? It all comes down to cash fl... Continue reading
Include Farm Loan Education in Your Succession Planning
June 29, 2021
term Succession Planning is not new to those in the business of
agriculture. While an important part of
any operation, many farmers and ranchers fail to pay close attention to the
process. Succession planning requires
considerable upfront preparation and plan maintenance to keep moving in a
productive direction. Many resources are
available, as this issue is important to any type of business, especially when
adult children are brought into the business.
no... Continue reading
Sustainable Ag 101: Protect Profits and Beneficial Insects with IPM
June 22, 2021
the fourth installment of our series on sustainable farming practices, where we take a closer look at how each
practice can bring long-term economic and environmental benefits.
Pests are an unfortunate reality of farming.
While pesticides are a common way of dealing with them, they may not always be
the best solution.
To start, they’re an additional expense.
According to a recent article of the University of Illinois’ farmdoc daily,
pesticides acc... Continue reading
Sustainable Ag 101: Rotational Grazing Improves Profits and Pastures
June 15, 2021
Livestock owners: What if you could make more
money with fewer animals? It may seem counterintuitive, but with rotational
grazing, it’s possible.
Rotational grazing is just as it sounds.
Instead of letting livestock continuously graze across a pasture, the pasture
is split into smaller paddocks, which the animals are rotated through.
This change in grazing can have big payoffs.
In Virginia, livestock owners saw net profits increase 0 per head. Beef Ma... Continue reading
This is the third installment of our series on sustainable farming practices, where we take a closer look at how each practice can bring long-term economic and environmental benefits.
Sustainable Ag 101: The Economic and Environmental Benefits of Organic Farming
June 08, 2021
This is the second installment of our series on sustainable
farming practices, where we take a closer look at how each practice can bring
long-term economic and environmental benefits.
Farmers who are interested in pursuing organics have good reason.
The USDA says consumer demand for organically produced goods shows double-digit growth, while the Organic Trade Association’s most recent industry
survey found organic sales in the food and non-food markets reached a record .1 billion.
... Continue reading
NAVIGATING HIGH FARMLAND MARKET
June 03, 2021
A rising tide lifts all boats, and corn
prices that have doubled in the last 18 months are doing the same for other ag
market sectors, including farmland values.
Land prices didn’t exactly track the
downturn in grain prices in the last eight to nine years. However, now that grain
prices are bullish, so is the farmland market. This is fueling some eye-popping
five-figure sale prices in places like the Midwest where farmland is a
bellwe... Continue reading
BUYING OR REFINANCING FARMLAND? TIPS TO NAVIGATE A BULLISH FARMLAND MARKET
IS REFINANCING FARM DEBT TO CAPTURE LOW INTEREST RATES RIGHT FOR YOU?
May 25, 2021
Interest rates are low, and it's enticing
many farmers and ranchers to refinance ag debt to capture savings the
marketplace is offering.
Low interest rates don't automatically mean
refinancing farm debt will save you money in the long run. It depends on how
current financing is structured and how much interest you're actually paying
right now. Sure, you may lower payments, but it's important to consider
variables like repayment capaci... Continue reading
Consider long-term goals with farm refinancing decisions.
These 7 Sustainable Ag Trends Could Future-Proof Your Farm
May 13, 2021
With net farm incomes predicted to decrease 8.1% in
2021, you may be looking for ways to stretch your budget and increase
One potential solution? Sustainable farming.
While there is no set definition for sustainable
ag, UC Davis says its goal is to “meet society’s food and textile
needs in the present without compromising the ability of future generations to
meet their own needs.”
The Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education specifies furt... Continue reading
Is Over Analysis Bogging You Down?
May 10, 2021
“Paralysis by Analysis” may be affecting the productivity
of you or some of your colleagues. Are
important deadlines being missed? In the
ag lending business, we have many of these.
It may be rushing to get a loan funded prior to maturity to avoid the dreaded
‘extension’, which leaves nobody happy. An
escrow may be closing. It may be putting
your loan package together for loan committee for approval or a portfolio
update to senior management might be the fire drill of the day. Whatever th... Continue reading
Rebuilding the Beef Industry Throughout 2021
May 04, 2021
As we celebrate Beef Month in May, it is still easy to see
that BEEF is the protein of choice for the American consumer. It just does not
sit on the grocery store shelves. It is surely in full demand! From its
leanness, convenience, taste & health benefits - and who wouldn’t agree
with it cooking up on the grill better than any other option.
As we head into the summer months and onward to fall
markets, ranchers and feedlot owners will be faced with several challenges,
which is not uncommon to the American be... Continue reading
A New Generation of Ag Lenders
April 19, 2021
growers many of you have likely gone to your bank or other financial institution
and found many new, young faces. The
account officers or relationship managers that you or your parents have done
business within the past are no longer there.
This can be very unsettling, as for most of us it is human nature to be
comfortable with consistency and familiarity.
The problem is the “Baby Boomer” generation is retiring at a very rapid
rate and thus leaving you in the hands of younger, less experienced
pers... Continue reading
‘BREAK YOUR COMPANY’: 4 REASONS FOR FARM STRESS TESTING
April 01, 2021
Editor’s note: This
is the first of two articles discussing farm stress-testing. Read part two on
how to stress test here.
Ask farmers a historical question about the
last major storm to hit their farm and wipe out their crop and they will likely
respond with an exact date, weather details and what they did to recover. The
same goes for grain marketing — memories of when they sold at peak prices and when
they scraped the floor of the market are vivid in many farmers' minds. The same
isn't always true when it... Continue reading
4 STEPS TO STRESS TEST YOUR FARM AND ALL THE ‘WHAT IFS’ YOU’LL ANSWER
April 01, 2021
Editor’s note: This is the second of two
articles discussing farm stress testing. Read part one on why to stress test here.
Stress testing is an exercise in “breaking
your farm,” a valuable tool in identifying budget and operational
vulnerabilities, how they influence your farm’s working capital and what
changes should be implemented to make your farm more resilient. While thereare a lot... Continue reading