Spring 2018 Commodity Marketing Strategy

Spring is rapidly approaching with warmer temperatures finally in sight.  As a reminder to all clients and tenants, cash rents are due on or before March 1, 2018.  Commodity prices remain relatively low and in line with prices we have seen over the past three years.  The past week there has been an improvement in prices due to weather concerns in South America.  We are watching commodity prices very closely and have begun to make some incremental forward sale of both corn and soybeans for Fall 2018 delivery.  Our strategy on marketing has been to determine cost of production and start making incremental sales above break-even levels.  Our overall target cash prices for Fall 2018 corn and soybeans are $3.50/bushel and $9.50/bushel respectively.  Once local cash prices reach these levels we begin to make small forward sales in 10-20% increments.  Historically, this has been a good way to average prices above what can be received directly out of the field at harvest.  We have also started to move old crop inventories at prices well above harvest levels.  Please contact us with any questions or concerns regarding our commodity marketing strategy.

Moving forward and looking past the 2018 growing season we have heard from several experts at a recent conference in Ames, Iowa.  Many commodity experts believe that much better marketing opportunities are in the near future and expect 2019 through 2021 to be much better that years past.  Much of this believe is based upon strong demand for soybeans and the potential for increased demand in corn from China.  Agriculture is in a world market and many things hinge on weather and demand from outside the United States.  Although agriculture has been a tough business the past several years we believe that better profit opportunities are on the way but patience will be needed to realize future improvements in commodity prices and profitability.