The following commentary does not necessarily reflect the views of AgWeb or Farm Journal Media. The opinions expressed below are the author's own.
Mike Walsten has covered major business trends in agriculture for more than 40 years.
A record $20,000 an acre was paid today for northwest Iowa farmland breaking the previous record of $16,750 an acre posted October 4. The farm involved featured 74 total acres (6 acres were pulled out of the 80-acre farm for a ditch and easement held by a neighboring farmer). There were 71 tillable acres. The soils pulled a Corn Suitability Rating of 70 compared to the county average CSR of 64.8.
The farm is located two miles north and one east of Hull, not far from the 120 acres just a mile northwest of Hull which pulled the eye-blinking $16,750 an acre back on October. 4. Now that's old news -- by $3,250!
Pete Pollema of Pollema Auction & Real Estate, Hull, handled the auction. Both the buyer and the prime contending bidder are area farmers. Bidding started at $15,500 an acre and took an hour, Pollema says.
And before you ask the question... No, it doesn't cash flow. That's not the point in that area.
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There was a private land sale south & west of this area that sold for $18,000 an acre about one week before this sale. So it wasn't quite the jump from $16,750 like they are talking. Not only that, but manure easment rights are also a huge consideration when bidding occurs. Overall, why would you ever want to pay over doubble what ground is worth. This was a simply a very expensive ego trip for someone.