By Tim Johnson, Area VP/West Central Region, Farmers National Company

Crop input prices have started to pull back from historically high levels. For producers now is a great time to start planning for crop year 2024 and take advantage of those lower costs that will benefit them later.

Some fertilizer products fell nearly 50 percent as we neared harvest 2023. They have now rebounded slightly, but still offer a sizable reduction compared to a year ago. Herbicide prices have been mixed with the majority remaining steady along with seed prices. Producers should take advantage of the deals out there and prepay to capture maximum discounts. One small disruption in the supply chain could spike input prices back to historic levels again.

Commodity prices have receded from recent highs. Many factors contribute to this decline, but if producers can lock in lower input levels for 2024 they can reduce the amount of risk in commodity price fluctuation. We saw a large reduction in net US farm income for 2023, this was due to very high input prices coupled with declining commodity prices and below-average yields. Looking forward to 2024 if commodity prices hold in there and yields are average to above, net farm income should not decline much if any due to the reduction in input prices.

Drought conditions have impacted the majority of cattle producers in the US spanning from Texas to the Dakotas. Many herds have been reduced and input prices are up substantially. Alfalfa hay has increased from around $130 per ton up to $225 per ton. This is due to short supply due to drought conditions.

Anyone interested in discovering how Farmers National Company can help them manage input costs and other facets of their farming operation can contact an FNC Farm Manager. Learn more at