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RSS By: Chris Barron

Chris BarronHave a margins question? Through this blog, you will gain insight into improving your bottom line, as a margins expert answers questions and provides farm business advice.


Invoice 2012 Seed Needs Now

Sep 18, 2011


Why should we be concerned about invoicing our seed needs for 2012 already? It seems like every year we need to be making our decisions earlier and earlier. For many it's difficult to commit to expenses for 2012 when we have yet to receive any income from 2011! Even though it may seem early to be making seed decisions, now is the time to begin the process as your seed decisions set the foundation for your planning in the coming year. There is really no better time than before or during harvest to think through your coming year’s seed plan. Some of the strengths and challenges of current hybrids are fresh in your mind which helps you make better product decisions. Most importantly, working through your seed decisions now will ensure receiving the best products from your seed supplier. Supplies on some key products may be tight as weather has impacted seed production much the same as it has impacted our commercial fields. If you're willing to commit early, it’s more likely seed companies can meet specific product needs.
As producers we prefer to leave supply issues to the seed companies. We expect to order what we need and have it delivered when we need it. This year however, presents a couple unique challenges for the coming year. Overall corn acres look to increase, as some estimates indicate we may reach over 94-95 million acres. So the question we face as producers is: do we want to access the best agronomic options for our fields at the front of the line or at the back of the line? Other local concerns regarding supply are disease situations. For example, Goss’s Wilt was severe in many areas. With the heavy return to corn on corn in localized areas, there will be a high demand for specific products which have better tolerances to this disease. Having these early conversations with your seed supplier will help you to lock down the products which best fit your situation.
Another compelling reason to have the seed plan completed early is for the development of your marketing plan. Once you have a rotation plan set and specific acres of production assigned to your fields, it's much easier to calculate production totals. Seed plans also help you determine other production expenses, which allow you to have a better handle on overall expenses. By having an accurate production and expense plan you can now compare this information to your marketing opportunities. The best margin opportunities could be in front of you right now!? With a solid plan and a clear picture of your expenses, production, and marketing plan it will be much easier to capitalize on margin opportunities.
Don't wait around too long this year to work through your seed plan. Seed is the foundation decision which initiates your overall crop management for the coming year. As you develop confidence in your productivity plan you can begin to improve your marketing plan and take advantage of margin opportunities as they develop.
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