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I was sat talking with my 90 years old father tonight and he posed the question of where I see 5he farm in twenty years time and whats I think is going to be the new big step that will improve the farm as a whole. To be honest I was taken back by the question. Driving home I was thinking where I’d like to be as far as farming goes. I’m totally happy working and can’t see myself retiring and becoming a snowbird. Although I love to travel in winter. For my farm I’d like to see how tile drainage could help improve crop yields in wetter years and make income more consistent and sorta weather proof. I’ve lost more yield to excess moisture that drought so water management is crucial. My kids are still very young so in twenty years time I’d really be happy if one or both decide to farm. So I’ll either be plodding away on my own still or making the transition to the next generation.
Wats the future hold for you and wat are your goals.
 

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This topic was discussed some while ago. Since then I haven’t changed my mind what my plans are, now if I could just remember what they were.
 

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Id think about it. But then I'm too tired. With these prices and the variety of unpleasant "surprises" mother nature gives, I tend to just focus on making it one more year.
Amen to that! The price of land is probably most on my mind as time goes on. Around here whether you like it or not over 5000 an acre is not uncommon. In order for a wise investment over twenty years I would expect that land to be worth 8000 an acre just to beak even with the interest. Its a extremely tough decision especially when paying 5000 leaves you with no net returns during that 20 years unless you combine it with land that was paid for or you are able to swing bumper crops continuously . It would be a lot easier decision if we knew land would be 10000 in 20 years. growing more corn to answer you question!
 

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My goals have always been to:
>Maximize production.
>Spot trends/cycles in farming and use to my advantage.
>Not screw things up.

Going forward I plan to spend more time with my family.
 

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Hard to say. 20 years from now I'll be 70. The age my mother died. Life is too short, so now I try to enjoy things a bit more than I did. Working 24/7 to me isn't what life should be all about.
There are new guys in the area hungry for land so I may hang in there a several more years then sell to one of them. They've already asked and would like me to work for them. So maybe go that way to finish farming, driving their new equipment and let them have the worries.
Or plan B, farm myself to the end.
 

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Have 2 boys that love nothing more than come for rides, hope 1 of them would like to take over. Staying healthy and happy is plan a, plan b is expand, well see where things go. Skipped on corn this year, 2 reasons have a weddig in europe the wife is in the bridal party and my lawyer said skippig corn would be more profitable lol, so ya hopefully early fall.
And the drought from last year knda scared me a little, growing crop insurance corn is the worst thing to do out in the valley we found out.
 

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In 20 years I'll be close to wanting to retire I think. But with near zero interest rate, saving money for that is a lot harder. Requires careful investment to get a return. Bank savings accounts just about run backwards these days. I wonder how my generation in general is going to make out going into retirement. And the ones after that. Working indefinitely (which is the plan for a lot of people these days) isn't tenable. Neither is expecting to be completely healthy indefinitely.

Right now most farmers in my area I think plan to sell at retirement (most within 20 years) and capitalize on inflated land prices. That's supposing that prices stay inflated, and it also supposes there will be a buyer. We don't intend to sell, though, as long as there's another generation willing to do it. I'm generation 4.
 

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But with near zero interest rate, saving money for that is a lot harder. Requires careful investment to get a return. Bank savings accounts just about run backwards these days.
It literally is going backwards. Regular banks offer a fraction of a percent for interest on savings accounts. Inflation is around 2%. You can find high interest rate accounts in online-only type banks from 1% to 2.3% generally but then you gotta pay tax on that.

If I were close to retirement age, I'd seriously be considering pulling out. Sell a quarter or two, put the money into the stock market, rent out the rest. Too many headwinds. Trade issues, weed pressure and herbicide resistance, consumer reaction to glyphosate, increasing input prices and the consolidation of our suppliers making them less competitive, they can charge whatever they want, land and rent are expensive, ag isn't big enough in canada anymore to warrant real attention and support from the governments. I might be getting into farming at the worst time in a while.

I'm not close to retirement age though. Still working off the farm. In 20 years I hope to be have long since quit my day job so I can give all the things on the farm the attention they deserve and still have some free time. That's really my goal. Hopefully we can stay profitable so that it's possible. Outlook isn't great right now.
 

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The big farms will probably keep getting bigger. Seems like you have to position now to take over entire smaller farms vs piecemeal. The baby boomer’s will need to pass on the reigns one way or the other in that time line and that will result in even more consolidation.

Equipment prices? Did we let it get this out of hand???

Hard to imagine just where things will be in 20 years, but just look how it’s changed over the last 20.
 

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Im just hoping they figure out the self driving thing and I have a bunch of robots running around so I can atleast farm from the pickup truck like a hutt farm boss.
 

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Farming has become a high cost, hi-tech, high overhead business, in which we are becoming increasingly dependent on "outside" systems.
IMO this is a big mistake that will and is coming back to bite us on the bum, especially when we have a run of lean years.

Equipment prices have gotten out of hand and farmers only have themselves to blame for that.
 

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Indeed. We're essentially outsourced contract labor for the big processing and commodities companies. It's a great deal for them. We get to shoulder all the risk and they get the profit! And they can cut us loose at any time that suits them.

This scenario played out years ago in the chicken industry in the US. From what I understand the chicken industry (now just 2 or 3 huge companies) pits farmers against each other, enforces NDA over the contracts, and actively intimidates farmers who speak out against the system. I hope things are better now than they were 10 years ago, but I doubt it.

I've heard from several growers that things are getting that way in the potato industry. The processors push growers to expand rapidly (they are wanting to expand by 15,000 acres in the next two years here), but require them to build and pay for their own storage (and the huge storage risk that 10 months of storage comes with), and of course haul it in when they want it. It's all under contract too. It's still lucrative (very actually), but comes with some pretty hefty debt load and a lot of risk.

I can't see how the current low interest rates are sustainable for anyone. Nor can I understand this notion of infinite exponential growth that our economies are based on. A correction will no doubt destroy a lot of farms, but it will also destroy a lot of these big ag companies and maybe the result would be smaller, more nimble companies and farms (more like how things used to be). Cheap debt is driving the push to get bigger bigger bigger.
 

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Indeed. We're essentially outsourced contract labor for the big processing and commodities companies. It's a great deal for them. We get to shoulder all the risk and they get the profit! And they can cut us loose at any time that suits them.

This scenario played out years ago in the chicken industry in the US. From what I understand the chicken industry (now just 2 or 3 huge companies) pits farmers against each other, enforces NDA over the contracts, and actively intimidates farmers who speak out against the system. I hope things are better now than they were 10 years ago, but I doubt it.

I've heard from several growers that things are getting that way in the potato industry. The processors push growers to expand rapidly (they are wanting to expand by 15,000 acres in the next two years here), but require them to build and pay for their own storage (and the huge storage risk that 10 months of storage comes with), and of course haul it in when they want it. It's all under contract too. It's still lucrative (very actually), but comes with some pretty hefty debt load and a lot of risk.

I can't see how the current low interest rates are sustainable for anyone. Nor can I understand this notion of infinite exponential growth that our economies are based on. A correction will no doubt destroy a lot of farms, but it will also destroy a lot of these big ag companies and maybe the result would be smaller, more nimble companies and farms (more like how things used to be). Cheap debt is driving the push to get bigger bigger bigger.

I can’t see how interest rates can rise. It was stall the economy and cause a recession. On top of that how is each country suppose to service there debit?

Just my thought could be totally wrong to
 
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