Farmers’ profits won’t be as big next year, but experts are still optimistic

Every year considers profits heading into the next growing season. Despite record-high input costs this year, most farmers came out on top with high commodity prices, but will next year offer more of the same?

Financial experts say farmers’ profit margins will not be quite as big as last year in 2023, but Stephen Nicholson, a strategist with Rabobank, says while there are more concerns for next year, he is still optimistic.

“I will say we’re not as concerned as we were. We’re still optimistic by ’23. Certainly, when we started off looking at margins, particularly crop margins for 23, we knew input costs were going up and thought it looks like a breakeven year, or maybe we go into the red a little bit, but generally, things look okay. There’s a cost side and a revenue side. The revenue side stayed pretty high, and that created a situation where saw those margins as we go into 2023 and look at price forecasts in ’23, the production margins for corn, wheat, and soybeans were on the positive side, particularly for corn and soybeans, and that’s a good thing. Are they as good as ’20, ’21, and ’22? No, absolutely not, and they are gonna be squeezed, but they’re not going to be negative. I think that’s the good news going forward.”

He says looking ahead to next year, farmers need to stay focused on marketing opportunities.

“Farmers are going to have to be very conscious not only of their cost side, but they need to be very conscious about their marketing side. And when those opportunities come about to lock in those margins, you need to do it and move on and not worry about going another nickel higher, or is it another one another dime higher? If you can lock in positive margins, do it, and move on.”