It’s expensive to grow corn. So how much does it cost?
The answer can be complicated, but using the South Dakota State Extension 2014 Crop Budget Calculator, the average cost to raise an acre of corn in South Dakota is approximately $383 (not including land costs or machinery ownership).
South Dakota farmers are expected to plant around 5.8 million acres of corn in 2014 according to the March 31st USDA/NASS prospective plantings report.
So if you were to multiply 5.8 million acres by $383/acre, it comes to a grand total investment of $2,221,400,000.
Yes that’s $2.2 billion, with a B. Farmers make enormous investments each year in seed, fertilizer, crop insurance, and fuel to name a few of the larger expenses that are required in order to grow next year’s supply of food, feed, fuel and fiber.
This large investment comes with great risk as farmers are at the mercy of Mother Nature and rising input costs with little certainty when it comes to grain prices.
So where does all the money go? To local co-ops, elevators, shippers, seed companies, fuel distributors, implement dealers, insurance companies, repairmen, hired help and many more local businesses that provide farmers with the many products and services they need to operate.
It’s no wonder why agriculture is the state’s number one industry as more than $2.2 billion is generated in order to grow the state’s number one commodity. Paving the way for billions more in value-added opportunities and exports.