Current Progressive Cattleman digital edition
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MANAGEMENT

Read how to improve your supervision of employees, financial matters, identification and record keeping. Learn more about land use issues that affect your operation.

LATEST

Cattle markets have been hard to figure out the past several years. In 2014 and 2015, we saw record cattle prices. It seemed like making money in the cattle industry was easy.

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In the most recent data, the occupational fatality rate for workers in the beef industry (including feedlots) was 116 fatalities for every 100,000 workers.

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Today’s cattlemen and women are well aware of the ever-increasing risks that could affect profitability. But when managing risk, there are still misperceptions around futures contracts.

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Although concerns over trade and unexpected weather conditions continue to be top-of-mind for those in the agricultural industry, there is always value in farmland. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, average agricultural land values nationwide are trending up. Average farm real estate value has increased 1.9 percent to $3,140 per acre from 2017 values. Cropland and pasture values have also increased over 2017, 1 percent to $4,130 per acre and 3 percent to $1,390, respectively. Gains in land values signal that investors are focused on farmland as a long-term investment and that they may consider trade tensions to be short term.

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An important issue at the forefront of agriculture is succession planning. Agriculture and the beef cattle industry take great pride that the highest percentage of farms and ranches are family-owned.

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When hiring a family member to return to the family farm after high school or college, we need to be very clear about our expectations, our justification for bringing them on as a full-time employee and the criteria for consideration.

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