Projected Crop Profits Vary |

Projected Crop Profits Vary

The 2020 projected profits vary widely by region and crop.

The North Dakota State University Extension projected crop budgets for 2020 are now available for the state’s producers, says Ron Haugen, NDSU Extension farm management specialist.

The 2020 projected profits vary widely by region and crop.

“The budgets are guides for large multi-county regions,” says Haugen. “Returns and costs can vary considerably between producers within a region. Also, the budgets estimate returns to labor and management with no consideration of price and yield variability or risk. A perfect comparison of crops is not achieved because different levels of labor and management, and risk exist.”

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Hard red spring wheat projects negative returns to labor and management in all regions of North Dakota except the northeast which shows an $11 per acre profit. Hard red spring wheat losses range from $1 to $35 per acre.

Soybeans project positive returns to labor and management in all but two regions. There is a projected loss of $14 and $7 per acre in the north Red River valley and northeastern regions respectfully. The rest of the state’s regions show positive returns ranging from $7 per acre in the northwest to $37 per acre in the southeastern region.

Corn projects losses from $2 to $21 per acre for five regions and positive returns for the other four regions from $1 per acre in the south Red River valley to $33 per acre in the southeastern region.

Malting barley shows slight losses in the northwestern and southwestern regions and larger loess in the Red River Valley regions. The losses in the valley regions are largely due to higher land costs.

Oil sunflowers project a profit in all regions but the north Red River valley ($18/acre loss) and the southeastern region ($25/acre loss). The positive return ranges from $10 per acre in the south Red River valley to $32 per acre in the east-central region.

Canola projected the largest negative returns in the southeastern region ($50 loss per acre) to the highest positive return in the north-central region ($31 profit per acre).

“Generally, for most crops, the projected total costs per acre were slightly higher than last year’s projections,” says Haugen. “Fertilizer expense was slightly lower. Seed, chemicals, and insurance costs were generally flat. Fuel, lube and repairs were slightly higher. Crop land rents for most regions were flat.”

Haugen adds, “Specialty crops may show a positive return, but usually have limited contracts and acreages, and also may have higher risk” The NDSU Extension-developed budgets are available online at, or by searching online for NDSU Crop Budgets.

–NDSU Extension

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