Today’s post comes from Ben.
April showers bring May flowers. Let’s hope so. How many times have the robins been snowed on now?
Maybe you’ve heard on the radio or TV how crop prices are up. I’ve talked about how all the input prices are up, and all of that means food prices at the grocery store may be going up.
There’s a lot involved in all this and I’m reducing it to a few sentences so, I may be making some sweeping generalizations here. The prices listed here, and the ones you generally hear on the news, are from CBOT – Chicago Board of Trade. Local prices will be less, as the local elevator gets their share. The difference is called the ‘basis’.
Yes, crop prices are up. Some of that has to do with the lack of imports from Ukraine and Russia, it has to do with stockpiles in the US, and it has to do with market predictions on how many acres are going to be planted this year.
Wheat prices had been running about $8/ bushel but jumped to over $12 in March and are now about $10.
Corn was $3 / bushel in August of 2020 and currently is almost $7.50.
Soybeans had been running about $10 / bushel and spiked over $16 in 2021, dropped at harvest to $12 and spiked again over $16 before dropping off a bit.
Why? It’s all supply and demand and the predictions and estimates of that.
India is the world’s second largest producer of wheat and they’re having a good year. And Kansas winter wheat predictions improved so supply may be higher.
Predictions show more soybeans than corn being planted in the US this year, which surprised the experts, but not really due to the extremely high fertilizer prices. (Corn takes more fertilizer than soybeans).
Brazil, which is a leading soybean producing country, may not be having the best crop this year. And as they guess what the weather might be in the US, that also influences pricing here.
It’s a little bit crazy and I don’t know how anybody should think they know what’s really going on. I guess if you’re lucky this week and your prediction is right, then you’re the ‘expert’.
I rotate crops annually; therefore in 2022 I will have more corn than soybeans, just because that’s how it worked out this year. Add in my shoulder issues and I’m planting less acres of oats this year, so I’ve got a few more acres of corn and soybeans both.
I saw a YouTube farmer talking about the high corn prices in 2012 so they built a huge shop. But by 2014 corn prices were down by 50%. And see, that’s always the problem; just because the price is good now doesn’t mean it will be good tomorrow, and I shouldn’t go nuts buying machinery and taking out loans. I bought Kelly a pearl necklace back in 2012; when the lady at the jewelry store asked what the occasion was, I told her corn was $5 / bushel. Bet she didn’t expect that answer.
I have 1000 bushels in storage at the local elevator. Local price there is $6.75. CBOT is $7.37. The basis is $0.62. The elevator charges $0.16 / bushel to store it for the first 3 months, then $0.04 / bushel after that.
Typically, prices are peaking about now so I’ll probably sell it shortly. There’s a tractor payment due in July that will take all of that and more. (But it’s the last payment! Yay!)
Duck count: Lost a black one and a cream colored. Still have two poufs, two cream, three black, and 17 mallards (that includes the Rouens that look like mallards except they’re fatter and they don’t fly). I did see a Rouen “hooking up” with a black one, so maybe they’re shacked up somewhere. But I kinda doubt it. The flamingos have returned, too.
I started keeping track of how many eggs I move out of the house. January was 20 dozen. February was only 10. March was 35 dozen! One day I collected 18 eggs. The previous day was 14.
No doubt you’ve heard of the avian flu going around again. I didn’t have any trouble with it last time. I’m hoping that holds true this time, too.
Working on my chick order for spring. Female chicks are somewhere between $4 and $5.30 each. The fancier, the more expensive. I’m looking at about $200 for 40 chicks. Availability varies, but I’ll shoot for mid-April. Weather should be warmer and stabilized some by then, right?
Predict Something. Remember Johnny Carson’s Carnac?