Statewide, Minnesota farm income was at a 23-year low this past year. That was not the case in the Red River Valley. Net farm income in the Red River Valley averaged more than $173,000 last year, up from a statewide average of $49,000. Farm Business Management instructor Ron Dvergsten gives the credit to decent yields and cash rental rates. “We also have a little more diversity in our corner of the state with farmers find a niche raising barley, canola, rye grass and those types of crops.” There are dramatic differences between the top 20 percent of farmers in the farm management program and the bottom 20 percent. The high profit group had net farm income of nearly $525,000 while the farmers on the opposite end of the spectrum suffered losses of more than $36,000. To be successful, Dvergsten advises farmers to know their numbers. “You don’t need to hit a home run every year. Sometimes getting that bloop single isn’t so bad either.”
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