Economics

Highway to the future

By Trista Crossley
Editor

One of the most important highways in the Pacific Northwest isn’t paved, but that doesn’t stop billions of dollars of goods and services from flowing up and down its length. Marine Highway 84, or M-84, is comprised of portions of the Columbia, Snake, and Willamette rivers and stretches from Lewiston,…

A germ of an idea

By Trista Crossley
Editor

The Port of Columbia is looking to build on the success of its Blue Mountain Station by paying tribute to the grains grown in the surrounding countryside. “I grew up on a big wheat and cattle ranch on the breaks of the Snake River, so this is my town. This…

wheat field

From mishap to mistake

By Anthony Smith
President, Washington Association of Wheat Growers

We all have mishaps in farming. Say you spray 100 acres of fallow for weed control, but you forgot to add the herbicide, or you forgot to unplug hydraulic lines while unhooking from an implement. These are definitely a couple of farm mishaps that may or may not have happened…

wheat field

Opportunities for growth come from planning

By Dr. David Kohl
President, AgriVisions, LLC

It is amazing how time flies and seems to accelerate as one grows older. When looking out the windshield, the quarter-century mark is approaching quickly. It seems like only yesterday we were discussing preparation for Y2K when the clock was going to strike midnight and computer systems would shut down. …

Session focuses on global, US markets

By Trista Crossley
Editor

When Todd Hultman, lead analyst for DTN, wanted to know why U.S. wheat prices were so low despite low ending stocks, all roads seemed to lead back to Russia. “It doesn’t make sense to me for wheat prices to be this cheap,” he said. “But when you look at the…

wheat field

Finding the right financial advisor for you

By Trista Crossley
Editor

Undoubtedly, most farmers would prefer to focus solely on the physical aspect of being a farmer, but unfortunately, there’s a whole other side to the occupation that needs regular attention. Bookkeeping, taxes, and legal planning are a big part of a successful operation, and many farmers have a team of…

Factors that could influence market conditions

By Trista Crossley
Editor

According to Shawn Hackett, the upcoming growing season is shaping up to be hot and dry during the core, yield-determining midsummer period with the potential for a hard freeze in late spring, all thanks to the convergence of several major weather-influencing cycles. “We could have a situation that is really…

wheat field

Farm bill implications for farmland owners

By Tim Cobb
Owner, Farmland Company

It isn’t uncommon for farm bills to move past their legislative expiration as was the case this past September when the fiscal expiration of the current 2018 Farm Bill occurred. It also isn’t the first time Congress has moved to enact a short term, one-year extension to keep the current…

Farmers may find benefits in retirement plans for employees

By Guest Author Jordan Thayer

Employer-sponsored retirement plans aren’t just for big corporations. Even farmers with only a few employees might find there are benefits and advantages to offering a retirement plan. What are the advantages to having an employer-sponsored retirement plan? There are many options, but the most popular tend to be a Simplified…

Social Security, Medicare: Tips for navigating the system

By Trista Crossley
Editor

For anybody, including farmers, approaching the traditional retirement age, social security and Medicare begin looming large on the horizon. These large government programs can seem overwhelming and confusing to navigate, leaving one wondering where to start. “Navigating is an appropriate term as it can feel like you’re a bit lost…