Top Farm Expenditure: Feed

Farmers in the U.S. spent more than $367 billion on ag production in 2013, which was up 2% compared to that spent in 2012, according to the Farm Production Expenditures 2013 Summary gathered by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. Average farms spent the most on feed:

“In 2013, the United States total farm expenditure average per farm is $175,270 compared with $171,309 in 2012, up 2.3%. On average, United States farm operations spend $29,779 on feed, $18,612 on farm services, $16,321 on livestock, poultry and related expenses, and $15,271 on labor.”

For ways to conserve on costs, visit our stories, “Corn-Soybean Silage May Cut Feed Costs,” “Save On Feed Costs By Grazing Replacement Heifers” and “What Does It Cost To Bale And Feed Corn Stalks?

Conservation Partnership Program

A governmental effort to bring together multiple players to invest in conservation programs has received a good initial response, according to USDA. Nearly 600 proposals were submitted to the agency with ideas to create cleaner air, healthier soils and improved wildlife habitat.

This program is an entirely new approach to conservation,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says. “By establishing new public-private partnerships, we can have an impact that’s well beyond what the Federal government could accomplish on its own. And we put our partners in the driver’s seat, allowing them to find creative solutions to the conservation issues in their local areas.”

The program comes at a time when USDA is dealing with severe drought across much of the country, offering financial and technical assistance to some growers and allowing others to utilize Conservation Reserve Program land for haying and grazing.

Missouri Right To Farm

Missouri voters appear to have approved an amendment that would enshrine the right to farm in the state constitution. The vote was so close a recount appears likely, according to a report in the Springfield (MO) News-Leader.

“[The amendment] is part of an effort to fortify the ag industry against animal-welfare activists and opponents of genetically modified crops, who fear the amendment will be used by corporate farms to escape unwanted regulations such as pollution control.”

One dairy farmer’s way to combat false public perceptions of farming: She become a blogger.