What Do Crop Enterprise Budgets Tell Us About Potential Returns in 2022?

Kevin Jarek, Extension Outagamie County Crops and Soils Agent

Crop Enterprise Budget Planning is not exactly a task that gets people excited. My experience suggests it ranks somewhere between a trip to the dentist and filing income taxes each year. However, 2022 is going to present challenges beyond pricing. Availability (or lack thereof) is the real wild card to watch in the coming months. As a result, it would be prudent to take some time to figure out not only what your intended plantings will be, but to have a backup or alternative plan if the need arises to make a switch based on the factors beyond our control.

The Corn and Soybean Crop Enterprise Budgets are examples of what many farmers should be considering as we make our final seed purchases and plan for the 2022 growing season. Yes, I already know the input costs and values I have used do not match your farm. Congratulations if you know your cost of production well enough to make this assertion. However, I do know there are a number of individuals out there who have not put pen to paper and figured out what the change in input costs (primarily fertilizer) may do to their budgets this coming spring. So, I have used average rates (where available) utilizing National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) data and Custom Rate Guides for Wisconsin (2020) and Iowa (2021). Custom Rate charges are sourced from the Wisconsin Custom Rate Guide 2020 at https://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Wisconsin/Publications/WI-CRate20.pdf and the 2021 Iowa Farm Custom Rate Survey at https://www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm/crops/pdf/a3-10.pdf while grain yield are available at https://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Wisconsin/Publications/County_Estimates/ and alfalfa yields at https://fyi.extension.wisc.edu/forage/files/2021/03/2020-WAYP-Summary.pdf.

The average corn grain yield in Outagamie County (NASS) in 2020 was 174.4 bu./acre.

The average soybean grain yield in Outagamie County (NASS) in 2020 was 50.8 bu./acre

The average alfalfa yield using the WI Alfalfa Yield & Persistence Project was 4.4 Tons DM/acre

The median charge for chisel plowing in Outagamie County (Region 3) is $20.00/acre.

The median charge for a pass with a field cultivator is $15.00/acre.

Planting expense across most crops was $20.00/acre, wheat was no-till at $22.50/acre.

Average Cropland Rental Rate in Outagamie County in 2021 (NASS) was $145.00/acre

The expected Net Return/Acre is identified at the bottom of each of the spreadsheets. My hope is you change the values to reflect the accurate expenses on your farm operation and calculate what the potential return for each individual cropping enterprise may be.

Download the Crop Budget Analyzer Excel Sheet

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