Jonathan Knutson / Agweek Staff Writer
Rural America isn't quite what it used to be, a new government study finds. The nation's most rural counties lost population and had relatively minor or even negative economic growth between 2010 and 2018, according to "Rural America at a Glance: 2019 Edition" from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service. In contrast, the nation's metropolitan counties — generally described as ones with at least one urban area of more than 50,000 people — gained residents and had relatively large economic growth
FARGO, N.D. — Tim Petry sits behind a table in a lobby. In front of him is the pre-registration list for the soon-to-start North Dakota State University Extension outlook conference for agricultural lenders. Bankers from northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota stream up to the desk to be checked in. But Petry rarely needs to consult the list. He greets most of the bankers by name — he's known them for years — and offers a friendly smile to all.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Winter arrived unusually early this year in northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota. Now, the annual Prairie Grains Conference — considered by some to be the unofficial start of the winter farm meeting season in the area — will return to the Alerus Center in Grand Forks on Dec.11-12.
Exports are increasingly important to U.S. agriculture, but foreign competitors are increasingly good at growing and selling crops. The combination poses challenges to U.S. producers in the decade ahead, a new government report says.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Frayne Olson understands that agriculturalists often have trouble keeping track of trade issues and new developments involving them. Olson, North Dakota State University Extension farm management specialist/marketing specialist, says he has the same problem. Olson spoke Oct. 28 in Grand Forks at the annual Outlook Conference for Agricultural Lenders. About 90 ag bankers from northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota attended the event, at which Olson and other NDSU Extension specialists gave their insights on a number of issues.
A few months ago, a reader sent me a very nice email calling me a "wonderful advocate for agriculture." Though I appreciated the comment, it surprised me. I've always thought of myself as an ag journalist who does his far-from-perfect best to understand and explain a complex, complicated subject, not as an advocate for ag. But, yeah, I suppose I am an ag advocate at times. Over the past few decades, I've been at gas stations, supermarkets, convenience stores and other public places where I've occasionally heard people make comments, almost always negative, about ag.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — If you're interested in big-picture economics — and everyone involved in Upper Midwest agriculture has a stake in the macroeconomic outlook — there are good reasons to be positive, said Bryon Parman, North Dakota State University Extension ag finance specialist. But he also sees a longstanding and growing reason to be apprehensive: the huge and expanding federal deficit.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — There's considerable debate over whether federal agricultural subsidies are a good thing. But everyone agrees that the federal farm bill, including the 2018 version, has a huge impact on U.S. agriculture, Ron Haugen said. And there's also widespread agreement that the 700-page farm bill is complex and complicated, said Haugen, North Dakota State University Extension farm management specialist.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — An informal survey of northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota agricultural lenders found concern about the financial condition of many of their clients. But the survey also identified one reason for optimism. About 90 area bankers attended the annual North Dakota State University Extension Outlook Conference for Agricultural Lenders Oct. 28 in Grand Forks. The event allowed ag bankers to hear insights from Extension specialists about crop prices, land values and other ag topics.
Farmers worldwide are getting better at raising food, but the world's food needs are growing even faster than the increase in agricultural productivity, a new study finds. The 0.1% gap — world ag productivity is growing 1.63% annually, with an annual increase of 1.73% needed to sustainably produce food, feed, fiber and energy in the future — threatens global ability to provide ag products for 10 billion people in 2050, the study says. The world now has about 7.7 billion people.