Farmer sentiment plummets in latest Ag Economy Barometer
An ag economist says skyrocketing production costs have contributed to the dramatic decline in farmer sentiment.
Purdue University’s Director of the Center for Commercial Agriculture Jim Mintert says the Purdue University/CME Ag Economy Barometer dropped to its lowest levels since April 2020. “Input prices is really the number one factor,” he says. “When we ask people about their concerns moving forward over the next year, that was number one. Number two, though, was surprising from a longer-term perspective and that was input availability.”
He tells Brownfield the uncertainty in the ag economy is unprecedented. “More people chose input availability as their top concerns than they did prices for crops and livestock,” he says. “That tells you how unusual this is and the level of uncertainty that is out there.”
And, Mintert says producers aren’t just concerned about what issues they might face in the future. “The index of current conditions actually dropped a little bit below the index of future expectations,” he says. “People have been concerned about the future for some time, and now we’ve really got this compounded by the fact that people are uncertain about what’s going on in the short-run.”
The May reading was 99, a decline of 22 points from April. The Index of Current Conditions dipped 26 points to 94 and the Index of Future Expectations fell 21 points to 101.
The Ag Economy Barometer is calculated each month from 400 U.S. agricultural producers’ responses to a telephone survey.
AUDIO: Jim Mintert, Director, Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture