Tuesday, December 2, 2014

This Ticks The Farmer Off

Farmers are ranting about this article on Crop Talk this morning.  Even if there is a grain of truth in it, it does not represent what most of us posters on Crop Talk do or believe in.

"This has got to be the dumbest Article I have ever read

So your telling me that it takes $435000 to put a yield monitor and auto steer in a combine. HUH. I was thinking more like under $15000

And what's so special about the Tim Kip d bag

I can count 5 operations within 30 miles of my operation that are running 12-20K and I know for a fact not a single one of them would say technology is what puts bushels in the tanks. It's weather. Heck half the time these big guys don't farm a piece of ground long enough to ever get enough data to switch management decisions on fert (LOL if they even use P and K), seed. Etc

There are also farmers in that 1000 or so acre and under category that have more toys and technology than the guys twice or three times their size. WHY you ask. Because the smaller guy is probably pulling down 200K of off farm income with benefits and retirement, owns most or all his land, and needs that technology because he has less time to be in the field

There are smaller operations netting 2-10X more per acre than the bigger guy down the road. When your equipment is lean and mean and paid for, and the land you farm is paid for and in great shape you have a competitive advantage for sure

The article totally missed the trend in AG. The little guy is still going to be around. Matter of fact those 1000-1500 acre and smaller crowd is growing. And yes the big guys are getting bigger and consolidation is happening too. The guy that's going to get squeezed is the all cash, non diversified, very little equity middle sized guy that can't afford to grow any bigger because of the huge capital infusion but is too big to be lean and mean like the little guy "

One of the largest farm operations in Ohio is cashing out this month.  The partners want a new life compared to chasing acres from Liberty Indiana to Madison County down to the Ohio River.  They were always near the top of EWG's famous farmer slam rankings.

This is occurring in other places too and the article doesn't get near that topic.

I vote for the little guy, I always did and yes I am one.

How about you?

Ed Winkle


  1. Ed I too believe that more farms and diversification is good for the Farm,Farmers and communtiy. We don't need to farm like years ago but we sure don't need 10,000 acres to make a decent living . The next few years will bve a changing point where either the smaller (pick your number) acre guys work off the farm fulkl time and farm some family owned land on weekends/evenings. Also with the move back to lower prices will the interest in "being a farmer" have the same attraction . regards -kevin

  2. Very good points Kevin but I see the some BTO's struggling also. Anything to help hand this farming business over from my generation to the next is a good thing I think.