Banking official confirms farm bankruptcies are down

A banking industry leader says recent gains in commodity prices have helped slow a recent trend.

Rose Oswald Poels is the President and CEO of the Wisconsin Bankers Association. She says, “We are definitely seeing fewer farm bankruptcies, yes.”

Poels tells Brownfield the increase in farm income has allowed farmers to pay down or pay off debts. “Between commodity prices and the government funding, you know, the farm sector is really in a really strong place so you’re not seeing bankruptcies as a result.”

Poels says one good thing that came from the pandemic shutdown was everyone realizing how important farming is to keeping food on everyone’s tables. “So the government payments which Congress did step in and offer in a variety of ways, from food assistance to PPP programs and others proved to be critically helpful to further stabilize farmers financially.”

Last year, Farm Bureau said Wisconsin had the highest number of farm bankruptcies in the nation with 48, followed by Georgia, Nebraska, and Kansas with 37.  Minnesota, California, Texas, Iowa, Pennsylvania, and New York rounded out the top ten states for farm bankruptcies.

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