Grain and milk markets present challenges for farmers in 2019

Milk and grain marketing series offers strategies to optimize farm profitability.

November 14, 2018 - Author: ,

Calf in front of grain bin

Commodity price outlook for 2019 continues to be gloomy for corn, soybeans and wheat as harvest wraps up across Michigan. Dairy stocks are continuing to build heading into the end of this year. The 2018 season was bad and it appears 2019 will be more of the same. Land rental rates, trade and tariffs, and input costs rising all contribute to the challenges facing farmers.

Historically, farm input costs adjust to the changes in commodity prices, but this tends to occur over a longer period of time. Farms need to make adjustments in their cost of production budgets as well as the marketing plans to survive until commodity prices improve, allowing the farm to generate positive returns.

To assist farmers making marketing decisions, a Milk and Grain Marketing Series will be held starting Dec. 18, 2018, and meet quarterly in 2019 on March 19, June 18 and Sept. 17. Fred Hinkley, Michigan State University Extension educator emeritus and marketing specialist, will provide insight and outlook on the milk and grain markets and suggest strategies to minimize financial risk.

Agriculture markets are more volatile than ever. For most farms, profits are largely determined by how well you market your production. Now more than ever your farm’s future success depends on your ability to understand the markets and use the basic marketing tools.

The meetings will be at the Isabella County Building Room 320, 200 N. Main Street, Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The cost for attending these meetings will be $400 per farm. This will cover all four meetings and will not limit the number from each farm/agribusiness that may attend.

Pre-registration is encouraged by Dec. 15. You can register for the program online at Milk and Grain Marketing Series 2018-2019.

If you have any questions, please contact me at 989-317-4079, 989-560-1371 or

Tags: milk and grain marketing series, msu extension

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