COVID Payments to Farmers Not the ‘Boost’ Some Expected

The USDA is projecting net farm income to rise $18.5 billion to $113 billion this year.

“Crop cash receipts are projected up nearly $38 billion, livestock cash receipts are up nearly $27 billion, and then production expenses are up $26 billion,” said Scott Brown from the University of Missouri. “The combination of all those changes in 2021 relative to 2020 is what gives us higher net farm income.”

That projection is up by 20 percent compared to the 2020 projection and 49 percent relative to the average farm income from 2015 to 2019.

The USDA has also lowered its 2019 and 2020 farm income estimates by $4.1 billion and $26.6 billion, respectively.

Brown said “crop cash recipes were revised downward by $11.8 billion but then also cash expenses were increased by $11.7 billion dollars. The combination of those things led to the revisions.”

He also said the additional funding from the government did not have the anticipated impact on income in 2020.

“Those 2020 levels, now $98.3 billion, are frankly very comparable to 2019 estimate of $94 billion,” he said. “Even with the $45.7 billion of government payments in 2020, it only helped to offset the otherwise tough situation that we saw in terms of cash receipts and then higher expenses. It wasn’t the boost some of the earlier February numbers suggested.”

Source: Brownfield Ag News