Producer Page: FSA Fun & Games

FSA Fun & Games---- We are finally able to visit our local FSA offices now that the government shut-down is over. One important reminder for you----the deadline for applying for the Market Facilitation Payment (MFP) (also known as the tariff payment is FEB. 14th. The Secretary of Ag has stated that this is a firm deadline, so do not miss this if you haven’t already signed up for this program.

Renewal Rants & Raves---- We are in the midst of our annual farm operating loan renewal appointments. We have appreciated the fact that the majority of you have been very good about completing your pre-appointment worksheets and in being organized when you come to the bank for your scheduled meeting. Times are lean and we may have more items to discuss and sometimes need to make some hard adjustments. Please remember that we are doing our best to try to help your business achieve profitability. Peoples State Bank is very fortunate to have such a fine group of customers to work with!

Insurance Insights---- Although it may not seem that way when you look at the recent weather…..spring is approaching! One of the first spring jobs for you is the selection of your crop insurance policy. We are currently in the price discovery month for setting spring price levels. In early March, you will have all the options available to you to try to put in place an insurance program that will control your risk at an acceptable price. The sales closing date for choosing a crop insurance policy is March 15. If you have any questions regarding this process, please feel free to give me a call.

Rules & Regs---- Don’t forget about renewing your private pesticide applicator certification if it is due, so that you are ready for spraying season. There are recertification classes in Fairmont on 2/14, in Albert Lea on 2/19, North Mankato on 2/28. You are supposed to have this completed by 3/1.

Dicamba Do’s & Don’ts---- Also, there are Dicamba training classes. Luckily, we have one here in Wells on March 19th. You need to pre-register for this class at https://members.mcpr-cca.org/eventscalendar

The Eyes Have it---- When is the last time you saw the eye doctor??? This should be a regularly scheduled part of your health program. Not just for good vision for reducing eye strain and to drive safely, but also for disease screening (for example-Glaucoma). Remember Kirby Puckett of the Twins? His career ended early because of glaucoma. Catching things early can help prevent big problems later. Kinda like equipment maintenance!

Furnace Fixes---- With all the !%#* snow we are piling up recently, please take a moment to make sure that all exhaust vents are clear for ventilation. Don’t forget your shop. Or your cabin. Or your ice-fishing house (someone died in a fish house in Fairmont a year ago). And you should have carbon monoxide detectors in working order everywhere you have a heating system. This is a sneaky killer, that you can prevent.

Information Intentions--- Now is the perfect time to make the promise to yourself to be organized with your financial information for 2019. Keep up on your monthly records. Have a system to keep track of grain contracts and marketing. Have your files arranged so you can easily find your insurance policies, FSA paperwork, tax info etc. Or you can use technology to have it in a computer or Ipad. (remember to back it up regularly) This should be a priority item. As they say, information is power, and if it is always available to you at a moment’s notice, you can use it to make better decisions.

Good Luck,

Mark

 

Mark Producer Page headshotAbout Mark Warmka

Mark has worked at Peoples State Bank since 2003, serving as lead agricultural lending officer and bank Senior Vice President. He is also a member of the Board of Directors. Mark has an extensive background in the financial services industry, possessing both investment and insurance licensing and is fully accredited as a crop insurance agent.

He and his wife, Kate, an elementary teacher in Blue Earth, live on and manage the home farm near Easton. Their daughter, Amanda, is a Physician Assistant at UHD Hospital and daughter, Sara, is teaching and coaching at Fairmont Public Schools. 

You can reach Mark by email or at 507-553-3155.

» More blog posts by Mark here

Producer Page: New Year

Finally!!!---Most farmers were very happy to celebrate a New Year! 2018 was a tough one for many…..too much rain reduced yields and the grain markets didn’t cooperate either. As we look ahead to 2019, we can hope for better things, but need to take management steps to put our businesses in the best position possible. Winter is the time to review your systems of accounting, marketing, and risk management. Try to take a good honest look at everything to find weakness, as well as, strength. Write down some changes and goals for this year and make a plan to improve your operation. We all have things we can adjust and fine-tune, and in this economic environment it is really important to do so.

Tax Talk--- The new tax law has some significant changes and you will need to understand how these may affect you. Hopefully, you did some tax planning with your advisor before year end. There are changes to the standard deduction (increases) and personal exemptions (eliminated) and itemized deductions (some limitations). There is an increase in child tax credits. There is a whole new deduction for Qualified Business Income but the limitation of the Domestic Production Activities Deduction. This is a very complex issue and has many factors related to the calculation. You need to make sure you and your tax preparer understand this topic. Also big changes in how the depreciation process works, especially on the trade-in of equipment. The trade-in on many items will now be considered a sale, and the Section 179 expensing on the new item will be potentially larger. This can also have an effect on your social security tax and earnings history, so tread carefully. As always, tax simplification doesn’t really exist.   There may be some opportunities for reducing taxation, but make sure you are reviewing carefully.

Insurance Insight--- Make sure you get your 2018 production to your crop insurance professional. Also it would be wise to make sure your bushels are accurate and consistent for both crop insurance and the FSA office for the tariff payment.

Government Gear Grinding--- As you know, the government is in a partial shut-down. This impacts the FSA office. If you have not signed up yet for the MFP payment (tariff payment), please stay tuned and get to the office as soon as it re-opens. Be kind to the staff once you are there, it was not their fault for the interruption of service!

Feeling Stuck??---- Farming can be stressful! While you have the independence of being your own boss, you might be feeling a lot of responsibility for things and control of very little. Finances, production, family relationships are all things that can be sources of real stress. There are people who can help! The Minnesota Department of Agriculture and the University of Minnesota have resources for you. The Farm Helpline is staffed 24/7 at 833-600-2670 extension 1. You can use the U of MN website at www.z.umn.edu/stressresources. Ted Mathews is the Minnesota Rural Mental Health Counselor at 320-266-2390 (no cost-no paperwork). Don’t forget trusted family and friends and clergy. They care. Also local medical providers are there to help at all times. Remember that you are not alone and we all need help sometimes.

Bin Buddy--- Hey……remember me?   I am full of grain that you haven’t looked at in a while. Just imagine that I am full of dollar bills, and I bet you would visit me a lot more! I just might need a breath of fresh air from my bin fans. There are some quality concerns about this year’s crop, so watch it carefully!

Take care !

 

Mark

 

Mark Producer Page headshotAbout Mark Warmka

Mark has worked at Peoples State Bank since 2003, serving as lead agricultural lending officer and bank Senior Vice President. He is also a member of the Board of Directors. Mark has an extensive background in the financial services industry, possessing both investment and insurance licensing and is fully accredited as a crop insurance agent.

He and his wife, Kate, an elementary teacher in Blue Earth, live on and manage the home farm near Easton. Their daughter, Amanda, is a Physician Assistant at UHD Hospital and daughter, Sara, is teaching and coaching at Fairmont Public Schools. 

You can reach Mark by email or at 507-553-3155.

» More blog posts by Mark here

Producer Page: Tariff Payment

The Market Facilitation Payment (also known as the tariff payment)

 

Some of the details of this new financial assistance for farmers has been announced.  The payments are as follows:

Corn:  1 cent per bushel

Soybeans:  $1.65 per bushel

This round of payment is on 50% of your 2018 production. 

Pork:  $8 per head

This payment is based on your hog inventory as of August 1, 2018

There is a $125,000 payment limitation on this aid.  However the limit is separate from other programs so it will not count against any ARC-County or PLC limits.

There may be another payment in the future “if warranted”………we’ll wait and see on that one.

A calculation example:

                              ---100 acres of soybeans yielding 50 bushels per acre equals 5000 bushels total production

                              ---5000 bushels x $1.65 payment rate x 50% payment level =  $4,125 total payment  ($41.25 per acre)

                               ---100 acres of corn yielding 180 bushels per acre equals 18,000 bushels total production

                               ---18,000 bushels x .01 payment rate x 50% payment level = $90 total payment  (90 cents per acre)

No need to rush into the FSA office as a corn and soybean farmer, you will need to be able to verify your 2018 production, and the staff probably doesn’t know a whole lot more than you do at this point about the paperwork needed.   Touch base with them later in September. 

Be safe this harvest!!!!!

 

Mark

 

Mark Producer Page headshotAbout Mark Warmka

Mark has worked at Peoples State Bank since 2003, serving as lead agricultural lending officer and bank Senior Vice President. He is also a member of the Board of Directors. Mark has an extensive background in the financial services industry, possessing both investment and insurance licensing and is fully accredited as a crop insurance agent.

He and his wife, Kate, an elementary teacher in Blue Earth, live on and manage the home farm near Easton. Their daughter, Amanda, is a Physician Assistant at UHD Hospital and daughter, Sara, is teaching and coaching at Fairmont Public Schools. 

You can reach Mark by email or at 507-553-3155.

» More blog posts by Mark here

Producer Page: Aphid arrival

It's that time of year again....................Aphid arrival.

It is time to begin scouting for this pest in your soybean fields. The University of Minnesota Ag Extension Service has developed a "speed scouting" worksheet to use when evaluating a field for potential treatment.   We are attaching this tool on our email and below for you to use.

It's been a tough year, but we are luckier than our friends in South-Western Minnesota, and hopefully we can see some recovery in the yield potential and the price.

One more thing.......be careful out there, whether mowing ditches or sweeping out grain bins, be sure to use common sense safety precautions!

 

Aphids

Mark

 

Mark Producer Page headshotAbout Mark Warmka

Mark has worked at Peoples State Bank since 2003, serving as lead agricultural lending officer and bank Senior Vice President. He is also a member of the Board of Directors. Mark has an extensive background in the financial services industry, possessing both investment and insurance licensing and is fully accredited as a crop insurance agent.

He and his wife, Kate, an elementary teacher in Blue Earth, live on and manage the home farm near Easton. Their daughter, Amanda, is a Physician Assistant at UHD Hospital and daughter, Sara, is teaching and coaching at Fairmont Public Schools. 

You can reach Mark by email or at 507-553-3155.

» More blog posts by Mark here