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Farm Business: 5 Top New Year’s Resolutions

By Tina Barrett Executive Director, Nebraska Farm Business, Inc., UN-L CropWatch New Year’s resolutions are really an effort to change unhealthy habits or adopt new ones to improve your life or business. As we think about recent shifts in the farm economy, it’s a good time to evaluate 5 areas that may need an overhaul in your business for 2016

Resolution #1 – Know Your Costs.

I often hear the old adage “You can’t control what you don’t measure” in my office and it’s true.  Knowing your costs, good or bad, is the first step to managing them. As we move into a time when prices and costs have squeezed a nice profit margin into little or no profit, knowing your costs may be difficult, but that doesn’t...
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Top 10 Ag News Stories 2015- #5 Pests Had a Field Day

No. 5 Pest Picture Intensifies in 2015

By Emily Unglesbee

DTN Staff Reporter

Let's face it, American farmers grow some mighty desirable crops.

Each season, growers compete with thousands of species of insects, fungi, nematodes and weeds. This year, the odds tipped in the pests' favor.

The 2015 season served up two new corn diseases, a newly identified soybean disease, and one aggressive new caterpillar pest. In the meantime, weeds continued to outpace available technology. Two long-awaited herbicide-tolerant crops remained in regulatory limbo as weed resistance to products on the market continued to expand.

Glyphosate resistance remains a top concern for producers across the country. Dense resistant waterhemp populations sent some Midwestern growers back to weeding by hand in 2015, and marestail had a...

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Top 10 Ag News Stories 2015- #6 Farmland Prices Didn’t Implode

No. 6 Farmland: The Bust That Wasn't

By Marcia Zarley Taylor

DTN Executive Editor

This was the year Grain Belt farmland values were supposed to implode. Instead, sales of good quality land continued to defy gravity, with many land markets trending sideways and some areas with bumper yields actually booking year-over-year gains.

Corn revenues have plunged 40% between 2012 and 2015, USDA estimates, removing much of the spark for farmland's boom this past decade. By mid-year -- when cash corn collapsed to the $3-range -- realtors like Steve Bruere, CEO of Peoples Company based in Clive, Iowa, had expected the state's land values to ultimately bottom 30%-40% below their 2013 peak.

Instead, "good" quality Iowa farmland actually nudged up about 4.8% through November 2015...

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