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USDA price indices up in March

Producers made and paid more in March.

The USDA says the index of prices received by farmers and ranchers was up 6.3% from February thanks to gains in corn, milk, broilers, and lettuce, which canceled out losses in calves, strawberries, broccoli, and tomatoes.

The dairy index for March was up 4.9% on the month and 50% on the year, with an all milk price of $25.90 per hundredweight, a jump of $2 from the previous month and $8.60 from a year ago.

The index of prices paid was 1.4% higher, with increases for field crops, diesel, complete feeds, and other services slightly outweighing decreases in feeder cattle, machinery, other repairs, and nitrogen.

Year-to-year, the index of prices received was up 31% and the index of prices paid was 13% higher, with gains in both tied to a stronger ag economy and inflation.

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