WEBINAR: Management Decisions Given COVID-19

The coronavirus and its control measures have changed economic outlook, leading to lower soybean prices. This webinar will discuss ways for farmers to deal with this situation, covering the latest in Federal and state programs to provide aid for farmers and look at up-to-date price and income outlooks for farmers. We will also look at guidance for management decisions for the upcoming growing season.

Presenter: Gary Schnitkey, Professor, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Gary Schnitkey, Ph.D., is a professor and farm management specialist in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and regularly contributes content to farmdoc Daily. Schnitkey focuses on farm management and risk management by examining issues impacting the profitability of grain farms including corn-soybean rotations, machinery economics and factors separating profitable from unprofitable farms. Schnitkey grew up on a grain and hog farm in northwest Ohio and received his Bachelor of Science degree from The Ohio State University and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from UIUC.

Gary’s Five Points of Advice:
  • Consider planting soybeans on “switchable” acres
    • Economics have changed and favor soybeans over corn
  • Grab all cash (PPP and EIDL), conserve all working capital
    • Farm outlook for 2020 looks ok (will probably see losses)
    • Cash flow will be helpful in 2021, though
    • Coronavirus Food Assistance Program – 27% of MFP 2019
      • About a $15 to $25 per acre payment
  • Start marketing remaining 2019 crop
  • Adjust 2020 crop marketing goals to lower prices
    • If we have a high soybean yield we could potentially reduce farm loss
    • Ethanol losses having more severe impacts on corn than soybeans
  • Realize the danger in setting 2021 cash rents at current levels
    • Still seeing low returns in early 2021 projected budgets
    • 2021 budgets released from farmdocDAILY in 2021 – will not include any MFP or government aid

Illinois Soybean Association
The Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) checkoff and membership programs represent more than 43,000 soybean farmers in Illinois. The checkoff funds market development and utilization efforts while the membership program supports the government relations interests of Illinois soybean farmers at the local, state, and national level through the Illinois Soybean Growers (ISG). ISA upholds the interests of Illinois soybean producers through promotion, advocacy, and education with the vision of becoming a market leader in sustainable soybean production and profitability. For more information, visit the website and



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