As I write this note, I am reminded by my wife that I made several New Year’s resolutions that I have yet to work at accomplishing. We spent several evenings before the end of 2017 discussing what areas of our life needed improvement, and even got Charleston Wachter (our 5 year old grandson) to enumerate his goals for the New Year.
One of my first and foremost resolutions was to be a better marketer for the commodities I grow. We had no problem focusing on the holes in my 2016/2017 grain marketing. I was determined not to sell corn for less than $3/bushel, as I wanted to make a profit as well as cover my cost of production: so much for that plan as I sold a bunch of corn for way less than that. Even though the $3/bushel opportunities were there, I did not act and my hesitation due to fear and greed was costly.
My 2018 marketing goal is still to sell corn for $3 or more per bushel. This year I am “resolved” to pull the trigger on some bushels. One of the first steps to figuring out my target price of $3 was determining my cost of production in 2017. I have all that info at hand, including my yields vs. how much I spent to accomplish those yields and what my fixed costs are/were. When you are dueling with a foe, you will always lose if you never pull the trigger. Hence, $3 here I come!
Should $3 be your marketing goal? Maybe, or maybe not. What is your cost of production? What target price do you need to cover your cost of production and meet your operation’s needs?
Perhaps the best way to better understand the upcoming market opportunities in 2018 is to come and listen and question Rich Morrison, a Senior Risk Analyst for Diversified Services, a division of one of the crop insurance companies for which we write. Rich, a marketing guru, will be our guest at a FREE seminar focused on the Crop Marketing Outlook for 2018. Rich always provides solid information and is happy to field your questions. Join us Friday morning February 16th at the Nordby Event Center on the SD State Fairgrounds in Huron and consider what Rich has to say. I can guarantee that he knows more about marketing than I ever will and he also understands how subsidized multi-peril crop insurance revenue products can help you develop a solid marketing plan.
Groundhog Day is around the corner. We all know how dependable Punxatauney Phil’s forecasting is. Obviously, my “predicting” skills are no good, so I have to rely on the information I have at hand, advice from the experts, and a steady hand when pulling my 2018 trigger.
Back to Charleston, a couple of his New Year’s resolutions were to 1) take his dad to the Cracker Barrel and to 2) have his Dad take him to Chucky Cheese. These are both lofty goals for a five year old and I wish him better luck at accomplishing them than this grandpa has been at achieving his. But this year, by golly, is going to be different and a success for us both!