Although it may seem counterintuitive, now is an ideal time to consider transitioning your operation to organic. That’s because while organic fertilizers tend to be premium to conventional fertilizers when all fertilizer prices go up, that premium drops to a much smaller basis, relatively speaking. The sky-high conventional crop prices more than offset the cost of the organic fertilizer premium.
For the transition years when you’re selling a conventional crop while using organic inputs, you could potentially be looking at a net profit, not a net …
Paul Burrs, a first-generation farmer from Northern Illinois, who owns and operates Hickory Ridge Farm, found his testimony for Midwestern BioAg this year. “Midwestern BioAg is going to fit well with what I need in the future,” said Burrs.
Burrs grew up working on a local farm throughout high school where he dug into his passion for agriculture and found his employer to be instrumental in helping him start his career. Upon graduating high school, Burrs went on to study agronomy at Illinois State University.
In 1993, the team at R & G Miller & Sons, Inc. opted to make the switch to organic dairy farming. “We weren’t satisfied with the way things were going on the farm,” said Ron Miller, general farm manager. “After becoming organic certified on all 1,550 acres and feeding our cattle organic feed for a year, we became fully organic certified in 1997. Since the transition, our yields have gone up, and I’ve only seen one alfalfa field on the farm that could benefit from pesticide …
Nutrient use efficiency means maximizing the amount of yield produced with the amount of nutrients that are applied. Enhancing soil biology is one of the best ways to get the most from your fertilizers. Here are a few practical tips on how to build soil biology:
Feed your biology all year.
Soil biology is the living organisms in your soil. This includes things like earthworms, bacteria, fungi and even protozoa, actinomycetes, and beneficial nematodes. All of these organisms need to eat, and by keeping living roots …
With low commodity prices and high organic crop prices, transitioning to organic can look awfully appealing. But is organic really right for you? Successful organic farming takes good soils and a different mindset than conventional farming. Are you, and your soil, ready to go organic?
Below are a few things to consider when assessing whether transitioning to organic is a good fit for your farm:
Are my soils healthy, with a lot of organic matter and good nutrient cycling?
I recently read a New York Times article on soaring farmland prices. An 80-acre Iowa farm sold on auction for $10,600/acre to the local John Deere dealer/owner. As he said, where else do you go with money? Farmers are not the only ones who make money as farmers do better; our economy will do better, too. We hate paying taxes and always keep investing in our businesses, the perfect plan for America.
So where is that Iowa family who sold that farm going with their money?