North Dakota producers to have 'many choices' in terms of markets in upcoming years

Tommy Grisafi spoke at Peterson Farms Seed annual Field Day about the current market and how North Dakota farmers will have many market opportunities in the following years.

Tommy Grisafi speaks to Peterson Farms Seed Field Day attendees about the current market situation following his presentation on Sept. 1, 2021, in Harwood, North Dakota. Emily Beal / Agweek

HARWOOD, North Dakota — Due to its rich soil and its climate, the state of North Dakota is able to produce an array of crops, compared to other regions in the country that stick to mainly soybeans and corn. This comes as an advantage to the growers in North Dakota, as they have more market opportunities, Tommy Grisafi says.

“The overall optimism in the state of North Dakota is not just corn and beans, which is what we’re talking about and celebrating today at Peterson Seed, but it's all the great products we can grow in North Dakota,” Grisafi said.

Grisafi was a speaker at Peterson Farms Seed annual Field Day on Sept. 1. Grisafi, a commodity broker and risk manager for Advance Trading, based out of Mayville, North Dakota, spoke about markets and the current positions of many North Dakota farmers.

With the current bull market, producers are seeing prices for their crops on the rise, and the trend continues to go upward. According to Grisafi, this is due to a multitude of factors such as drought, the shortage of grain around the world, as well as the recent destruction of Hurricane Ida.

“There is a lot going on, then you throw this hurricane that happened,” Grisafi said. “There’s an overall shortage of grain in Canada and the United States. The demand is phenomenal throughout the world as we continue to stay in somewhat of a COVID environment.”


COVID-19 threw an unknown variable into the market mix, due to its longevity, unpredictability and overall economic impact that was felt all over the world. The drought has influenced not just the markets, but according to Grisafi has had quite the impact on younger farmers in the state as well.

“It has influenced prices tremendously, but it also influenced the psyche of the North Dakotan farmer. If you’re in your young 30s, you have never seen anything like this. So there’s a whole generation that’s never seen this impactful of a drought and didn’t realize how bad it could be and how scary this can be,” Grisafi said.

Throughout the presentation Grisafi talked about barley, edible beans and canola trading at incredible prices, and he urged producers in attendance to take advantage of the current market situation, as these current opportunities do not come around often. The bull market will not last forever, he said.

Though harvest season for certain crops has not yet commenced, Grisafi urges farmers to think and choose wisely about which seeds they plant in their acres this upcoming planting season. Producers should add up their overall output to plant the crop and then determine if it's the right choice. Even if the crop may be selling higher in the markets, there is a good chance that the output will also be higher, therefore the farmer will not make as much profit as they would if they chose a lower input crop.

“I really want growers to be aware of the choices they have and the opportunities they have the next few years,” Grisafi said. “We’re gonna be plagued with inflation, and although they see prices higher, I'm not so sure that when they add all the things it takes to grow a crop that they’ll be as profitable as they think in years to come.”

Emily grew up on a small grains and goat farm in southern Ohio. After graduating from The Ohio State University, she moved to Fargo, North Dakota to pursue a career in ag journalism with Agweek. She enjoys reporting on livestock and local agricultural businesses.
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