Iowa farmers balance high commodity prices, rising costs

Farmers deal with tight margins at times and crop insurance could provide security.
Farmers deal with tight margins at times and crop insurance could provide security.(KTIV)
Published: Nov. 21, 2022 at 4:51 PM CST
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(KTIV) - The financial bottom line for farmers is ever-changing. And, although commodity prices are high, farmers face rising operational costs.

In Iowa, the Farm Bureau says farmers benefitted from an overall solid harvest, and high commodity prices. But, fuel and fertilizer costs are skyrocketing. Iowa Farm Bureau President Brent Johnson says he is constantly talking to lawmakers in Washington about the upcoming Farm Bill, and why he thinks it is critical for farmers to have subsidies like crop insurance.

“Our number one priority, right there is to make sure that we have adequate crop insurance availability to producers across the state. That’s, that’s really the number one reliance that we have, as far as a floor or stability into this industry,” said Johnson.

Johnson said fertilizer and fuel costs have resulted in, at times, a 300% increase in operating costs. He said when production dips, farmers see the pinch quickly. The one thing that is holding the line is high commodity prices.

“The bright spot right now is that the commodity prices are the, it does allow cash flows to happen currently at these levels. But you know, that it is a commodity, and it is traded daily, and farmers aren’t in charge of the prices that we get, we’re simply offered the prices,” said Johnson.

Johnson said they are continuing to encourage young people to get into farming as the workforce continues to age. He realizes the impact farmers have on the food supply of the entire world.