Minnesota Farmers Endured Fifth Straight Year of Thin Profits

Extension economist Dale Nordquist says dairy farmers faced some of the toughest challenges.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – A new report says bumper crops and occasional upticks in prices weren’t enough to save most Minnesota farmers from a fifth straight year of thin profits in 2017.

The annual analysis from University of Minnesota Extension and the Minnesota State colleges and universities system finds that nearly one-third of Minnesota farmers saw their net worth decrease in 2017. Median farm income was just over $28,500, down from about $36,000 in 2016.

Extension economist Dale Nordquist says dairy farmers faced some of the toughest challenges.

Milk prices tanked in the second half, and a lot of producers are now losing $2 on every hundred pounds.

He says pork producers were the one group that enjoyed higher profits thanks to somewhat higher prices.

High yields have helped crop farmers withstand low prices.

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