Graphic showing titles of Seeds & Fertilizer, Crop Production and Agro-Services
“During the winter months, farmers are busy caring for their livestock, applying the upcoming crop season inputs when the weather allows, and preparing for the new crop year,” says HOMEBANK Ag Lender Karen O’Brien. “There are many decisions to be made in preparation for planting season, including how you will finance your crop inputs and operations.”
Here we offer some insights on how to evaluate your crop input resources and match your crop input needs with your financing resources.
As you evaluate your recent crop yield performance, be sure to review your entire input resources to identify opportunities to save money or even increase your investment in areas that could provide increased crop yields.
Evaluate your seed and fertilizer purchases over the last few crop cycles and see how it may have fluctuated, either due to the amount you purchased, the producer you used or purchase discounts they provided. With the advancement of technology and organic options available to provide seeds and fertilizers, consider how you may reduce your costs with early seed and fertilizer purchase discounts.
The good news is that analysts confirmed that the supply chain for seeds and fertilizers remain mainly unimpacted from the COVID-19 pandemic, so your options are considerable and worth the time to research.
Analyze how well your crop protection strategy and resources (herbicides, insecticides and fungicides) helped protect and boost your yields per unit of land. Do your research and utilize specialists as needed to ensure you are investing in the right protection for your crops. A good resource to start with is Crop Protection, the Official Journal of the International Association for the Plant Protection Sciences.
Identify where you have potential for yield increases with the assistance of available data analytics services and crop management software. The rapid technological advances in crop data analysis tools are vast and worth the time to explore. Utilizing data science to measure crop yield history and current growth can provide real-time data, allowing you to adjust your growing strategies as needed, and not waiting until the end of a cycle to realize your potential.
“Understanding your crop yield potential and evaluating factors you can control, such as fertilizer, seed, organic matter, chemicals, fungicides and other inputs, is the first step in planning for your upcoming season,” says O’Brien. “Once you have your strategy ready, you can move on to the critical step of properly financing your crop production with appropriate cash flow options.”
“Ag financing allows you to better manage and align your crop cycles with your cash flow. Utilizing your cash resources will allow you to take advantage of seed, chemical, and fertilizer purchase discounts and can increase your potential profit margin,” O’Brien continues.
The benefits of an Ag Line of Credit for crop inputs are many:
You can benefit from lower interest rates and leverage the expertise of a specialized Ag Banker to help review your ongoing cash flow and operational needs. It is essential that your banker be there throughout the year to help align your financing needs with that of your changing crop yields.
HOMEBANK offers a complimentary review of all your depository and financing needs, customized to meet the needs of the farming industry. We come to you to discuss and evaluate what’s important to you and your business.
Contact HOMEBANK today or make an appointment to discuss your ag financing options. We provide personal banking and business banking solutions tailored to meet your needs.