An ‘odd year’ for St. Joseph County farmers

Agricultural report presented to county commission

CENTREVILLE — Michigan State University Extension Field Crops Educator Eric Anderson gave a report on the state of agriculture in St. Joseph County during Tuesday’s St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners meeting.
Anderson said it has been an “odd year” for farmers in St. Joseph County, and listed off the four challenges farmers are facing: declining farm income, the impact of the “tariff war,” tar spot disease on corn and late and prevented planting.
In terms of declining farm income, Anderson said farmers had peak prices in both corn and soybeans in 2012, peaking around $7.60 a bushel for corn and $16 a bushel for soybeans. Now, those prices are down to $3.50 a bushel and $8 a bushel respectively, as of the middle of 2019.
“They are about on par with what they were before that peak, unfortunately, the input prices have not come back down, so farmers are actually where they were as far as the grain commodities about 10 years ago,” Anderson said.

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