Capital Agricultural Property Services (CAPS) offers farm management to all types of property owners and investors nationwide. CAPS real estate professionals provide brokerage services for farms for sale via private treaty or auction, as well as buyer broker representation. CAPS’ offices and associates are strategically located in the prime agricultural regions of the U. S. giving us a unique perspective and skill set to help landowners meet their goals and objectives. In 2016, CAPS celebrated its 30th year as an agricultural leader in farmland real estate sales and property management.
Farm Industry News and Updates
The number of farms in the U.S. for 2016 is estimated at 2.06 million, down 8,000 farms from 2015, according to USDA data released today. Total land in farms, at 911 million acres, decreased 1 million acres from 2015. The average farm size for 2016 is 442 acres, up one acre from the previous year. See the report.
Producer sentiment inched higher during April as the Ag Economy Barometer increased to 130. The latest result for the Purdue/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer, which is based on a monthly survey of 400 U.S. agricultural producers, was slightly higher than March’s 124 reading.
There are always a number of important issues to consider at the start of a year. More importantly, the questions facing production agriculture in 2017 seem to be more critical than years earlier. With that said, here is Farm Forum’s list of the 16 key questions facing production agriculture in 2017.
One of the most promising areas for UAVs is agriculture, where drones offer the potential for addressing several major challenges. With the world’s population projected to reach 9 billion people by 2050, experts expect agricultural consumption to increase by nearly 70 percent over the same time period. Agricultural producers must embrace revolutionary strategies for producing food, increasing productivity, and making sustainability a priority. Drones are part of the solution, along with closer collaboration between governments, technology leaders, and industry. See more.
The Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund assists veterans with advancing their careers in agriculture by giving them access to funding, resources and support services. The Homegrown by Heroes label is proudly displayed on products grown, raised and produced by hardworking farmer veterans who have chosen to serve their nation twice – once by defending it and again by feeding it. Find out more about Homegrown by Heroes.
From an anti-regulation, anti-establishment President to mega mergers to murder prompted by chemical drift, 2016 was an unprecedented one for the ag community. Here are the top stories from this past year, compiled by the Successful Farming team.
U.S. farmers will plant a record 84.6 million acres of soybeans in 2017 – up 900,000 acres from this year and enough to assure the second crop in a row above 4 billion bushels – while reining in corn acreage by 5%, projected the Agriculture Department, based on conditions in November. Read more
A tight supply of corn has the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture considering imports from the U.S. Northstar Commodity chief market analyst Mark Schultz says Brazil has harvested a poor second crop. “That is the corn that is planted (directly) after they harvest the soybeans. Drought has reduced the crop size, creating a short corn supply that’s escalated prices locally. Because of the pressure domestic livestock producers are feeling, Schultz says Brazil will open its doors to as much as 1.5 million metric tons of GMO corn. Argentina and Paraguay have been filling that void, but it is possible Brazil may eventually turn to the U.S. Read more
What’s Ahead for Agriculture Under Trump? For the past eight years, many farmers have chafed under what’s seen as regulatory overreach under the Obama Administration. Farm groups and Trump supporters expect that to be pulled back after the New York real estate mogul was elected the 45th president. Read more.
Seven Things Farmers Should Know About Trump’s Win: The agriculture community wasted no time considering what comes next; many industry groups and prognosticators have already weighed in on what priorities agriculture should pursue moving forward in light of not only the presidential election, but the implications of various down-ballot initiatives. Here’s a summary of what happened and how the industry is reacting.
The Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy Barometer is a nationwide measure of the health of the U.S. agricultural economy. On the first Tuesday of each month, the Ag Economy Barometer provides a sense of the agricultural economy’s health with an index value. The index is based on a survey of 400 agricultural producers on economic sentiment each month. Quarterly, the index will be accompanied by an in-depth survey of 100 agriculture and agribusiness thought leaders. Access Barometer
According to the Washington Post, the bees with which most Americans are familiar – the ones which pollinate crops on the mainland and make honey – are doing just fine. Data released by the USDA this year indicates there were 2.66 million commercial honey-producing bee colonies in the U.S. That’s down slightly from the 2.74 million colonies in 2014, but is still significantly higher than it was in 2006, when colony collapse disorder was first documented. Read more.
New York Times: There is much to like about small, local farms and their influence on what we eat. But if we are to sustainably deal with problems presented by population growth and climate change, we need to look to the farmers who grow a majority of the country’s food and fiber. Read article.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack hosted a roundtable of young and beginning farmers at Iowa State University on August 17. As the men and women shared their stories and concerns, several themes stuck out. Here are seven of the biggest challenges facing young and beginning farmers. Top 7 Concerns
Nearly 90 percent of Americans have a favorable view of farmers, and 92 percent said it was important to provide them with federal funding, according to a new national poll released today. Furthermore, positive marks cut across party lines, showing that a strong farm policy is a bipartisan issue. “Americans overwhelmingly like farmers and support the programs that protect them,” explained Jon McHenry, vice president of North Star Opinion Research, the polling firm that explored the general public’s views on farmers, farm policy and crop insurance. See Poll Results.
Prudential Agricultural Investments has released its second quarter market report on agriculture and timberland investments. Agricultural commodities included range from pecans and sugar cane in the Eastern Region, to row crops in the Central Region, to nuts and a wide range of fruits in the Western Region, and citrus in both the east and the west. Read the Report.
A recent survey by the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) reveals that 71% of farmers are interested in having access to a central repository where they can store and control their data. Of those surveyed, 82% say having a voice in the management of that repository is important. Access the Survey.
Recently, the Supreme Court in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., Inc., set a precedent that landowners may challenge the Corps’ jurisdictional determination specifying that a piece of property contains a “water of the United States.” The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association filed an amicus brief in support of Hawkes. NCBA President Tracy Brunner said this is a major victory for landowners across the country. Read more.
Purdue University’s Center for Food and Agricultural Business has started a new publication focused on tailoring business insights to the world of food and agriculture. The Purdue Food and Agribusiness Quarterly Review is a compilation of expert faculty reviews of business books, research papers and articles. Reviewers also offer insights to make the concepts in the original articles applicable specifically to food and agricultural businesses. The review’s first edition is online.
Farmers who employ Internet-connected and precision farming equipment should be very mindful of the way they configure their devices, the FBI warned in a public statement advisory at the end of March. The Bureau, together with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), issued the note as an alert to the growing security threat. The FBI is particularly warning against data breaches that may expose farming data saved with various companies or on cloud accounts. Read more.
Farms are getting a bit bigger, but there are less of them, according to the USDA’s annual Farm and Land in Farms report. The U.S. was down 18,000 farms in 2015 compared to 2014. With an estimated 2.07 million farms in the U.S., the land in farms fell 1 million acres totaling 912 million acres in farmland. More details and link to full report.
Agriculture Data: Putting Farmers in the Driver’s Seat – Farmers collect valuable data every time their equipment passes through fields and that information will fuel tomorrow’s innovation. But currently the potential of this resource is not being fully realized. The Agricultural Data Coalition, or ADC, is dedicated to helping farmers get the most out of their newest asset. Our mission is focused on designing, creating and managing a central repository where farmers can store their information and oversee how it is accessed. Data farming will be key to agriculture’s future, and farmers should be in control. Visit the website for more details.
Prudential Agricultural Investments has just released its 2015 4th quarter market update, which provides an overview of U.S. agriculture and timber markets. The newly redesigned newsletter covers commodities across the major growing regions of the country. 4th Qtr 2015 Market Update.
Biofuels consumed under the expanded Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS2) have reduced U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 354 million metric tons of CO2-equivalent since 2008, according to a new analysis conducted by California-based Life Cycle Associates. The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), which sponsored the study, said the findings have important implications for the pending final rule for 2014–2016 RFS volumes. Read analysis.
Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden has announced a commitment by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to prioritize $5.6 billion over the next two years within USDA programs and services that serve new and beginning farmers and ranchers. She also announced a new, tailored web tool designed to connect burgeoning farm entrepreneurs with programs and resources available to help them get started. The new web tool is here.
A wet spring and low prices kept many farmers from planting all the ground they wanted in 2015. Farm Futures’ first survey of 2016 planting intentions shows growers planning expansion in the year ahead. Summary of survey results.
In recent years, farmers and ranchers have enjoyed profitable times, but many experts, including the USDA, are predicting stress ahead in the ag economy. The American Bankers Association is helping producers prepare by providing key financial considerations. To help producers prepare financially for the changing agricultural economy, ABA has prepared a list of tips.
Agricultural producers rented and farmed 353.8 million acres of farmland, according to the results of the 2014 Tenure, Ownership, and Transition of Agricultural Land (TOTAL) survey results released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). Of these acres, 80 percent are owned by non-farming landlords. Read more and access survey.
Sensors of various types topped the list of “15 Emerging Agriculture Technologies that Will Change the World,” according to futurist Michell Zappa. See the full list.
The American Farm Bureau Federation and Measure released a study that identifies and quantifies the benefits of drone technology in precision agriculture. Version 1.0 of the ROI Calculator will be available as a web-based application on the Measure website; additional functionality will be added over time to include more drone applications and types of crops. The ROI Calculator quantifies the economic benefits of Drone as a Service for three applications: field crop scouting, 3D terrain mapping, and crop insurance. It initially covers three of the largest production crops-corn, wheat, and soybeans-allowing growers to quickly and easily determine if drone technology warrants further exploration after they input information about their farm into the ROI Calculator. A fact sheet of the study.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced a new report on discoveries by USDA researchers that have led to new patents and inventions with the potential for further reaching applications and economic growth. USDA innovations included in this annual report range from USDA supported research that could offer solutions for millions who suffer allergies from peanuts and wheat to safe mosquito control that can help halt the transmission of diseases they spread, and others. Details
A senior Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) official said the agency expects to finalize regulations for U.S. commercial drone operations within the next 12 months – optimistically before June 17, 2016. Advocates of the technology predict that unmanned aerial systems will transform a number of industries, including agriculture, real estate, news, retail delivery and entertainment. Read more.
According to Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack, Congress took a stand to support American businesses, communities and families, rural and urban alike by passing the Trade Promotion Authority legislation. He noted that TPA will help to secure the future of American agriculture and the rural way of life, and will protect American workers, create new opportunities for rural businesses, and protect the environment. Read more.
A recent surveys shows women make up more than half of today’s agriculture graduates in the U.S. Assistant dean emeritus for Purdue University’s College of Agriculture Allan Goecker says there have been some big changes since the survey began in 1980. “The number of women graduates probably has increased in the neighborhood of 50 to 75 percent from where we were in 1980,” he says. Every 5 years since 1980 the US Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture has measured employment opportunities for college graduates in food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and the environment. This report is the eighth in a series of five-year projections initiated by USDA in 1980. Link to full report.
CAPS’ Executive Manager Tim Harris gave a presentation on farmland leases to land owners. The talk has been broken into three video clips, Land Lease Basics, Negotiation Tips and Rental Rates. The clips can be viewed on the CAPS YouTube Channel.