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2022 Range and Pasture Conditions

2022 Range and Pasture Conditions

Last week’s Crop Progress Report from USDA provided the first data point on 2022 pasture and range conditions. Like other crops, the Crop Progress Report shows the percent of pasture in very poor, poor, fair, good, and excellent condition. According to the report, 29%...

The Value of Proper Soil pH

The Value of Proper Soil pH

The increased cost of fertilizers has many users asking where fertility costs can be reduced.  Soil testing has long been recommended for farmers, ranchers, and homeowners to identify fertility levels and enable them to only purchase/apply that which is...

Should Feeder Calves be PI Tested?

Should Feeder Calves be PI Tested?

In recent years, Southeastern producers have asked whether testing for Persistently Infected (PI) Bovine Viral Diarrhea (BVD) virus generates a premium for feeder cattle. The answer likely depends on certain factors. For example, if a group of feeder cattle is born...

Extension Budgets and Budget Tools

Extension Budgets and Budget Tools

The Southern Ag Today team of editors and contributing authors are, for the most part, a group of Extension Agricultural Economics Faculty from the Southern Region Land-Grant University Systems.  Many of this same group are responsible for a decades-old...

Beef Cow Slaughter Continues to Run High

Beef Cow Slaughter Continues to Run High

The culling of beef cows was a major reason why the size of the beef herd decreased during 2021 as beef cow slaughter was up by almost 9% from 2020 levels. A frustrating calf market and drought in much of the US led to herd reductions as a lot of cows were sent to...

Overtime for the Agricultural Industry

Overtime for the Agricultural Industry

The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) does not require that employees who are employed in agriculture receive the federal overtime payment of time and one-half their regular rates for hours worked more than 40 hours per week. However, states are free to...

Dairy Product Prices

Dairy Product Prices

Dairy industry participants have had several tough years over the past decade as it relates to milk and milk product prices. However, the end of 2021 and the beginning of 2022 have been positive from a price received standpoint. With the U.S. all milk price sitting...

The Future for Cotton

The Future for Cotton

Cotton is a key crop for Southern agriculture and, like many other commodities in the South, is heavily export dependent. Unlike other commodities, we reimport a lot of cotton in the form of textiles which makes export demand more closely tied with U.S. import demand...

March Cattle on Feed Sets a Record

March Cattle on Feed Sets a Record

The latest Cattle on Feed report was released last Friday and reported a record high level of cattle in feedlots for any March. The March 1st total of 12.16 million head was up 1.4 percent above a year ago and is the highest total since the data series began...

President’s Budget:  Does it Matter?

President’s Budget: Does it Matter?

It’s around this time of year – with the release of the President’s budget – that we start to get a lot of questions about what’s going to happen with Federal spending for the year.  The questions are quite natural given the amount of attention the release...

Using Put Options for Risk Management

Using Put Options for Risk Management

Commodity prices for corn, cotton, soybeans, and wheat are high, yet could go higher.  Put options on agricultural commodity futures are an important risk management tool for producers in today’s environment. Buyers of put options pay a “premium” for the...