The biggest ag news in the Red River Valley this week was probably the Feb. 21 ag land cash rent auction for the Orten B. Brodshaug farm, based in Kindred.
Brodshaug, who lives at Horace, N.D., in the southern shadow of Fargo, rented out 7,300 acres in one fell swoop. The rental prices ranged from $126 to $174 an acre, with an average of $150 to $160, so the total rental payments will run $1.1 million over the next three years. Brodshaug’s farm equipment auction is March 6.
Of course all of this is driven by corn prices — people being able to lock in corn at $4 next year and in the high $3 range for the next two years. All of this euphoria is back-stopped by the corn insurance progam, which takes alot of the risk out of the equation.
About 100 farmers had the $10,000 cashier’s check and a lender’s letter, assuring they were bonafide bidders. Only nine people successfully bid on the land. One farmer who attended noted that the biggest chunk of the choicest land went from a northern Red River Valley sugar beet farmer. Makes sense, because Brodshaug’s land hadn’t seen beets, so the rotation problems usually associated with valley land aren’t a problem.
Bottom line: landlords and land renters up and down the region will be having heart-to-hearts in the next few weeks. Planting is only about a month away, yes?