CoBank calls for mixed ag outlook in second half

Ag economists with CoBank expect tight global grain stocks to drive farmer prices into the second half of 2023.

Knowledge Exchange Director Rob Fox doesn’t expect the recent recovery in grain prices to be strong enough to upset the year’s downward trend.  But, he tells Brownfield widespread drought should.

“With drought in various parts of the world, particularly in Europe, the U.S. isn’t going to have a great crop—so when those stocks-to use-ratios get pressured, I believe we’re going to see significant upside potential in grain markets,” he says.

Fox says while row crops are likely to end in the black, livestock markets are a tossup.

“The cattle ranchers will be doing great on the beef side, if they have the forage,” he says.  “Dairy’s been in a tremendous slump the past four or five months due to very weak international demand.”

He says pork prices for producers have been very rough the past six months and the sharp turnaround over the past six weeks should hold for the second half.

On the positive side, Fox says crop input costs have declined from the past year which should bring some relief into 2024.

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