Dear Young Farmer:
- Know your cost of production. This is nothing new to you. But really know what it costs you to produce that bushel of corn or soybeans.
- If you have an opportunity to diversify, do. Diversification has helped our farm tremendously.
- Face the reality that you will not be making the same profits you have in the past few years. This doesn’t mean you will never make these profits again, it just means it won’t happen for a while. You may need to do some things differently. Find ways to become more efficient. In the end, it’s times like these that will make you a better farmer.
- Keep the communication open with your lender and suppliers. Continue to build those relationships.
- Keep your friends and family close. Do not isolate yourself. Talk to other farmers. Learn what they are doing to get through these times. Listen and offer encouragement to other farmers and do what is best for you and your farm.
- Consider working with another farmer(s) by sharing equipment and/or labor.
- Sign up for a marketing class. Take this time to educate yourself in ways that will benefit you in the future. Again, this will make you a better farmer.
- It’s okay to listen to your parents or any other farmer that fits that age category. They have wisdom that only time and experiences create.
Be patient, you will get through this. In five years, farming will be different than it is today. You may need to make some tough decisions, but in the end, you and your farming business will be better because of it. Take some time for yourself and your family. And always, always remember what is really important in your life, which is your faith, friends and family.
Farmers who understand and have been through this before and know there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
This was a sponsored post I wrote for AgStar. These are my own thoughts.