Cash may be king, but for farmers who stop growing a certain crop, the decision is not based on profitability alone.
Recently on social media, I asked farmers what crop they have eliminated from their rotation and why. The reasons for dropping certain crop types are as varied as the crops themselves. From durum, to peas, to barley, to soybeans, it seems no crop has won every farmer’s approval.
Some are sick of storing crop long-term. Some are adjusting acres based on trade disruptions. Others are facing a new or tough-to-manage disease or insect that simply wipes out any chance of profit. That’s the case for canola in many areas of Ontario that battle swede midge, and peas that face aphanomyces infection in the west. Still more feel the chance of hitting a premium just didn’t happen often enough to justify the acres. For others, harvest management was the straw that broke the proverbial camel’s back.
Want to see all the responses? Click on the tweet below to read the entire thread:
— Lyndsey Smith (@realloudlyndsey) November 6, 2019
Many of the factors named certainly do play in to the overall profitability of a crop, of course. But some farmers also mentioned why they continued to grow certain crops or have bumped those acres. For example, a move to fall-seeded crops, or spring cereals helps to deal with additional factors like weed issues and time management.
Soybeans. I have no other crop that can suck profit like soys. Been growing them since 2013 but no acres planned next year. Even if prices hit $12/bu it's still the lowest netting crop.
— Landon Friesen (@landon707) November 7, 2019
Spring seeded cereals. We get way more straw and much better market opportunities with fall seeded wheat. We now direct seed forage into wheat stubble instead of an underseeded spring grain (always a nightmare to combine).
— Todd Payne (@asphodelsheepco) November 6, 2019
Confection Sunflowers. Got tired of fighting with Mother Nature and grain buyers.
— Dwayne Leslie (@webfarmer) November 6, 2019