Five-Year Outlook for Iowa Agriculture
Crop and livestock producers in the United States have been faced with one of the most challenging fall and winter seasons in recent memory. The price of corn fell to the lowest level in a decade, and soybeans, which had been buoyed by the price of oils, recently succumbed to decade lows also. Pork producers struggled through the worst December on record when the price of barrows and gilts fell to Depression era prices. Cattle producers, while seeing declining cattle numbers and after running in the red for more than a year, dealt with stiff competition from pork and poultry producers who where cranking out record production. They have been unable to turn a profit until recently, partly because of larger than expected beef production caused by record slaughter weights and overall large levels of meat available.