The last year was difficult to say the least, from a wet, muddy spring and late planting to an early, wet fall and difficult harvest. Unfortunately, for cow calf producers, the repercussions were seen during pregnancy detection this year, as the number of slaughter cows within the state were abundant due to open cows.
A SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis is something that you can sit down and complete during this first month or so of 2020 so that you can set your operation up for success as we move into the more hectic times that spring brings.
This winter it is time to study up on the Farm Bill elections and make an appointment with the local Farm Service Agency (FSA) in order to put the program in place for the farm. The deadline to make the election is March 15, 2020.
Yardage cost is the non-feed cost per head for every day that an animal is fed harvested feed in some form of confinement. Yardage is usually associated with calves and yearlings in the feedlot, but this concept can apply to drylotted or wintering cows as well.
Strong business management skills and systems do not go out of style in times of uncertainty. These skills will help the business work through downturns in commodity prices. Cash flow budget accuracy is critical in developing and controlling the business.
We would like to share some advice on measures to follow due to the problems that are affecting the world population today, including all of us.
Measurement of the actions and efforts of everyday life on the farm or ranch leads to better management and efficiency. Many farmers and ranchers keep many records. Utilization of the records for improved management would be the next step to take to improve efficiency.
Producers can be quick to adapt and utilize technology, but sometimes need a little nudge in other areas. COVID-19 sometimes feels like one of the areas that agriculture needs a nudge in.
South Dakota producers recently indicated they plan to plant 12.9 million acres of corn, soybeans and wheat in 2020, plus an additional 620,000 acres of sunflowers, 345,000 acres of oats and 45,000 acres of barley, as well as 270,000 acres of sorghum and 11,000 acres of dry edible peas.
Communication has always been a key in any farm operation. In today’s environment, clear communication with your employees is more than crucial due to COVID-19 impact.