With rain, South Dakota farmer says ‘everything will be perfect’


With rain, South Dakota farmer says ‘everything will be perfect’

The weather is in growers’ favor in northeastern South Dakota. Many farmers in that area are finished planting before fieldwork could even be considered a year ago. Todd Hanten at Goodwin, which is near Watertown, South Dakota, is encouraged by a gentle rain, waiting for his late April-planted soybeans to come up.

“I think this will really help everything emerge and really get a nice pop. The weather forecast is for 70s and possibly even 80 up here in the northeast part of the state, and man, things will change in a hurry,” Hanten told Brownfield Ag News during a gentle weekend rain. “That will be just what the doctor ordered. It’ll be perfect.”

Ethanol and price issues resulted in Hanten storing a lot of 2019 corn, so he’s backing off his corn acreage by 40 percent and adding to his soybean acres.

“With beans being 50 bushels an acre, versus 190 bushels an acre [for corn], I can store a lot more of my crop,” said Hanten, “which I have the fewest forward contract sales on at this time than I’ve ever had in, for sure, 20 years.”

Hanten has bunkers of feed for cattle, and empty feedlots, but is currently unable to lock in a profit on forward contracted cattle.

“I don’t know why I should buy [feeder cattle] then, but it’s what I’ve always done so honestly I probably will be buying this next week,” he said.

Hanten has delivered contracted fed cattle to his packer, although about 20 days later than he had planned. Hanten’s phone “is ringing off the hook” from people wanting locally processed beef.

AUDIO: Todd Hanten

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