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Clemson Economist; Producers Should Work the Numbers before Planting

Last week, Clemson University ag economist Wilder Ferreira spoke with Southern Farm Network’s Bob Midles on working the numbers for 2013 crops:

I think farmers should spend more time on the planning side, the more time they spend planning the more successful they will be at the end of the season. They should look at how they can do better on their yield with less input. With the price volatility, I would look at variable cost more closely.

When I do my studies I always plug in the different prices that may occur for that year, that has a huge impact on my forecasting that I do for growers. I have a spreadsheet file where they can manipulate the prices and it affects the profitability right away.

For this particular year, double cropping is prime. Any chance a farmer has to use another commodity to supplement their income, I would start to look at.
To me soybeans are a red flag crop. This year they have the highest impact in profitability depending on the price level so any price below $13 is risky.
In my analysis of dryland versus irrigated corn, I have two conditions. In good conditions, like 80 bushels per acre, it pays off for the irrigation system in less than one year. So its highly recommended to go with irrigated corn.”

For more of Wilder’s comments, as well as extended coverage of the South Carolina Agribiz & Farm Expo, click here is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.