Friday, November 20, 2009

Situation Worsening for US Farmers

A lot of Mexicans think of big John Deere tractors, large expansions of land and farm subsidies from the government when they think of U.S. farmers. They think that U.S. farmers have it made.....but its far from the reality. If it wasn't for those subsides that help them just barley cover costs or other off-farm family incomes, there would be no family farmer left, and it looks like the situation is getting worse.

Every year, the average farm income declines, but food prices keep going up....Where is all the money going? Farmers can't make it anymore, and things are only going to get worse, peak oil is just around the corner and what do most U.S. farmers depend on in their farming? Petroleum... for their inputs, for their tractors, for transportation etc., modern U.S. agriculture depends of petroleum. In the end, when you consider alllllll the costs and inputs for this type of agriculture, its highly inefficient. Whether we like it or not, we are going to have to change and if not, we will be the ones paying for it at the grocery store along with the thousand of family farm that won't be able to maintain a living for farming anymore.

Check it out-

2009 Farm Income Forecast
Farm Sector Income Is Forecast to Decline in 2009

Net farm income is forecast to be $54.0 billion in 2009, down $33.1 billion (38 percent) from the preliminary estimate of $87.1 billion for 2008. The 2009 forecast is $9.6 billion below the average of $63.6 billion in net farm income earned in the previous 10 years.

In 2009, crop prices have continued to decline and prices for livestock animals and products have experienced sharp declines. With economic conditions deteriorating worldwide, demand for exports has tailed off, with few options available to expand marketing elsewhere. Sharply declining demand in 2009 has forced farmers to accept prices that are lower than were expected earlier in the year when production plans were made.

On the input side, prices are also projected to be lower than in 2008, particularly for most manufactured inputs, feed, and services such as repairs or transportation. Overall, the reduction in gross income will far exceed the reduction in production costs, leaving all net measures of income and output below the record or near record levels established in 2008.

Average Farm Household Income Forecast Down in 2009

In 2009, average family farm household income is forecast to be $75,895, down 5.2 percent from 2008, and 8.0 percent below the five-year average for 2004-08. In 2009, the average family farm is forecast to receive 7.6 percent of its household income from farm sources, with the rest from earned and unearned off-farm income (unbelievable).

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