FAPRI: lower prices and tight margins ahead

A new food and ag outlook from the University of Missouri’s Food and Ag Policy Research Institute says lower commodity prices and tight margins are expected for some U.S. farmers and ranchers this year.

Director Pat Westhoff says if weather conditions are average for the upcoming growing season, crop yields would likely be higher than the last few years for major commodities. 

“Additional supplies could put downward pressure on crop prices.”

FAPRI says this year, corn prices are expected to fall to $4.39/bushel and could move lower in the future. Soybean prices are projected to decline more than $3/bushel to $10.73 for this year’s new crop.

Westhoff says the price outlook for the livestock sector varies, based on species. He says hog prices are expected to stay the same as last year and poultry and milk prices are expected to decline slightly. Cattle prices remain a bright spot.

“Returns to cow-calf operators who have forage available has been strong for the past few years, but because of the drought conditions we’ve had across much of the country cattle numbers are down. There’s less beef coming into the supply chain not just this year, but through 2025 as well.”

Westhoff says overall, net farm income will likely decline due to relatively high input costs against the lower commodity prices.

“To put things in context, it’s still above levels we saw from 2015 to 2019.”

Read FAPRI’s 2024 U.S. Ag Market Outlook.

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