The Economics Of Agriculture

HEADLAND, AL (WTVY) Farming in the wiregrass can have a billion dollar impact. And with the start of spring farmers are gearing up for this year's harvest. Agriculture is big business in the wiregrass. And it may surprise some just how much of an economic impact the industry has.
Lets face it being a farmer isn't the most glamorous job. But one henry county farmer is getting prepared a little earlier in hopes of a good harvest.
Myron Johnson, who owns Double J Farms, Inc., "Easter's right around the corner so normally once Easter gets going we feel pretty secure in going ahead and get started planting".
Monday, Johnson was getting his fields ready to plant corn. But the problem isn't the economy he says the problem is the profit itself.
Kris Balkcom, "A lot of them are mainly concerned with the prices that we have. their obviously economics get their attention a lot".
Alabama cooperative extension system researcher Kris Balkmon says it's as expensive to be a farmer today as it was 30 years ago. He's hasn't seen much price difference since the 1970's.
Johnson says, "Back then we were looking at 680 dollars a ton versus this year, you know 350. If you don't figure in the government payment but. It's still a depressed market whether you figure in corn, peanuts or cotton".
The latest statistic from the extension system shows peanut production at 79 million dollars. Johnson says it's difficult to predict yields from year to year but he's says he's staying positive.
"Since we don't really know we might as well be optimistic and think they're going to be really good this year", says Johnson.
Johnson went on to say along with being positive he'll be praying for good weather. The extension systems statistics show our district has more than 2 million acres of farmland.
The extension system also reports along with the economic impact there are over 2-thousand jobs in peanut production across the state.



 
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