- Associated Press - Monday, September 22, 2014

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) - Ohio corn farmers might be producing more crops, but the boom in supply and higher expenses are driving down profits this year.

Most farmers are reporting they are producing more bushels this year, but the price they’re able to get for the commodity has been roughly cut in half compared to last year.

Western Ohio farmer Tom Tullis said he regularly saw corn prices as high as $6.50 or $7 per bushel as late as last year. But prices this year have been closer to $3. At the same time, operating costs such as machinery and fertilizer have remained high

“It’s about half price or below what it was last year,” Tullis told the Dayton Daily News (https://bit.ly/1uwu8jN ). “And our inputs are staying pretty much in the same place as far as fertilizer, chemicals and everything else. It’s going to be a tough one.”

Most farmers will have enough assets to withstand a tough year or two, said Matt Roberts, an agricultural economist for Ohio State University Extension. The majority of farmers across the state will likely break even this year, Roberts said, although there will be some who lose money.

Similar issues are also facing farmers who are growing other crops such as soybeans and wheat, he said.

One factor that should help is that farmers are also producing record yields, western Ohio farmer Alex Ward said. That means even if prices are low, farmers will be able to sell more of the product. Despite the lower price per bushel, Ohio farmers also seem to be faring slightly better than those in some other areas of the country, Ward said.

Commodity prices rely heavily on supply and demand, so it’s not a surprise that prices are down this year, said Tadd Nicholson, executive director of the Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers Association. Farmers have had several good years, and those tend to balance out over time, he said.

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Information from: Dayton Daily News, https://www.daytondailynews.com


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