Input cost hike puts squeeze on Minnesota sugarbeet grower
The dramatic rise in input prices is further squeezing margins for a sugarbeet grower in west-central Minnesota.
Nate Hultgren of Raymond says back in the 1990’s beets were consistently profitable.
“And (now) we’re not seeing that wide margin in the years when you do knock it out of the park, and most of that is because our fixed costs, or the cost of production, has gone up so much compared to what we’re getting for revenue on the crop.”
He tells Brownfield higher fertilizer and herbicide costs are cutting into an increasingly narrow margin, and he pleads with the government to not make matters worse.
“Keep things open. I know there’s some talk about some CDL restrictions for instance on truck drivers right now, and the timing of that couldn’t be any worse. We need to make sure that we’re not standing in the way of business (and) not standing in the way of farms when we want and try to get these crops planted and get them harvested because we’re already up against the wall when it comes to supply chain issues.”
Hultgren is president of the American Sugarbeet Growers Association.