CORN IS A VERY SMALL PORTION OF OVERALL FOOD PRICES

cost of corn in products

The media would have you believe that when the cost of corn goes up, you can expect your food prices to skyrocket, but don’t believe everything you read.

The corn portion of most foods is a very small portion and when corn prices increase, it only yields a net increase of a few cents to your food. The larger contributor is transportation costs – so the cost of gasoline is a better indicator of when you might expect food prices to increase.

The price of corn is significantly low right now – almost at the point where farmers are losing money on every bushel they harvest – yet your food prices aren’t decreasing, are they?

FARMING {IT’S MORE THAN CROPS & CRAP}

-BeanWalkinEvery day, I count my blessings. I’m thankful that I have been raised on a farm, where working hard is second nature. And when I say working hard, I mean hard, physical, manual labor. Whether that’s baling hay, picking sweet corn by the dozens (I’m talking 100 dozen by hand), walking beans, or scraping old barns to prepare them for a fresh coat of paint. It all needs to be done, and I’ve learned the job is more enjoyable with some country music and a good attitude.

-SweetCornMy farming parents always challenge me to grow, become better, stronger, and healthier, just as they wish for their crops. There are plenty of opportunities to be challenged on the farm. There are always new things to be learned, and sometimes that requires me to step out of my comfort zone. That includes learning to change my own oil, driving a tractor for my first time, or trying to understand marketing concepts my parents use. I’m the kind of gal who likes to have all the answers, but sometimes you have to forget about your pride and ask -cropcheckinquestions.

Farming is a job where what my family and I do today can affect results several months later. So decisions must be made accordingly and priorities must be in place. I love that I get to look out the window of the farmhouse each morning and watch the crops progress until harvest comes. Harvest time is filled with hard work and long hours. When we were younger, we associated harvest time with homework in the grain truck, lollipops from the local elevator, and a harvesttired mom and dad. Now we realize that it is a lot more than that. Harvest time means that we are finally able to reap the rewards of the time and work put into that year’s crop.

Farming is working alongside my family day in and day out in order to raise crops that helps feed the world. Can it get any better than that?

Turn the Paige to hear more of my farm story. You can find me on Facebook at Turn The Paige: The Story of Farmer’s Daughter

paige ehnlePaige Ehnle
Illinois Central College Student
Turn the Paige Blog

 

LETTER OF APPRECIATION: TO A FARM DAD

Did you know this week is National Write a Letter of Appreciation Week? If you’d like to write a letter to a farmer, rancher, parent, grandparent, etc… we’d like to feature it here on our blog! Send your letters to ilcorn@ilcorn.org and we’ll also throw in a special gift for taking part!

Today’s letter comes from Susan Parrish of Edenton, NC:

Dear Dad:

Growing up on a farm was one of the best things that I have ever experienced. We raised corn, peanuts, cotton, soybeans, wheat, rapeseed and about 150 head of cattle in a small rural town in Eastern North Carolina.  I used to think life was unfair when I was little, being the oldest of 5 children, I felt as though I had a lot of responsibility.  When my friends were running the streets, I usually was home helping on the farm, whether it be preparing the next meal, helping you with the cattle, or driving a truck or tractor. At the time, I thought it was punishment but now I realize these days were teaching me a major lesson in life.  You taught  me to love the land, hard work, respect, honesty, and determination.  When school was out, our friends were playing, watching TV, and hanging out.  We were scouting cotton, chopping peanuts, working in the garden, hauling hay, moving cattle, or just helping with equipment. Mom would be in the kitchen cooking 3 meals a day as well as helping you around the farm.  She was one of the best non-judgmental people I know.  We lost her way too early, but she had raised 5 children and helped you with a successful farming business.

After mom passed away at age 50, you stepped up to the plate and took things over as well as kept your business going.   Now you and my brother are partners in the farm and have a very successful business going.  We all still help when needed and that will never change.  Being part of a family farm, I believe is one of the best things that anyone could go through.  It has blessed us in so many ways.  I appreciate all you have taught me and through all my ups and downs you have been there 100%.  You will help anyone in need, will give the shirt off your back.  You are one of the greatest people one could ever meet.

Susan L Parrish

Parrish Family

 

LETTER OF APPRECIATION: THANK YOU AG TEACHERS!

Did you know this week is National Write a Letter of Appreciation Week? If you’d like to write a letter to a farmer, rancher, parent, grandparent, etc… we’d like to feature it here on our blog! Send your letters to ilcorn@ilcorn.org and we’ll also throw in a special gift for taking part!

Today’s letter comes from Coleen Bedford of Shoals, Indiana:

Dear Ag Teachers,

Thank you for pouring your life into the future of agriculture. Thank you for the early mornings, and late nights. Thank you for sincerely caring about each and every one of your students, and making your FFA chapter like a family. Thank you for being a listening ear, and a shoulder to cry on. Thank you for believing in your students, and doing whatever you can to help them achieve their goals. Thank you for teaching us not just how to fix fence and judge a dairy cow, but also to be honest, humble, and to persevere. Above all, thanks for making a difference in the lives of your students.

Coleen G. Bedford

student and ag teacher
Coleen Bedford with ag teacher Logan Felts

LETTER OF APPRECIATION: FROM A FARMER’S DAUGHTER

In life’s hectic day-to-day grind, we all probably take many things, and people, for granted.  It’s easy to do.  This week is National Write a Letter of Appreciation Week, so take a few minutes today and think about something, or someone, you’d like to show appreciation for and write a letter.  You can send yours to ilcorn@ilcorn.org and we’ll feature it here on our blog…. We’ll also throw in a special gift for taking part!

Dear Farmer – more specifically – Dad,

Hollands 006Growing up on a family farm, life wasn’t always easy or ‘fair’.  I wasn’t able to run down the street to play with my friends after school or on many weekends like the rest of the kids in my class.  You expected me to be at home helping in the garden, in the field mowing hay, or in the pasture checking cows.  And you didn’t pay me for doing these things.  If I wanted to buy something extra, then I had to earn the money for it.  Summers of my youth were spent detasseling and baling hay.  Once I hit sixteen, I worked part-time outside of the farm.  You were always there for me and supplied me with the necessities, but if I wanted more, I was expected to earn it myself.

I wasn’t able to have all the coolest, up-to-date clothes that the other girls in my class sported.  Mom took us shopping at Farm & Fleet and we got the Wranglers that were on sale.  Boots were handed down from older siblings, it didn’t matter if they were boys or girls, we wore what fit.

While my town friends were sleeping in or watching Saturday morning cartoons, we were working cattle before the heat set in for the day.  Sometimes even being woke up in the middle of the night to round up loose cows.

You know what though… I wouldn’t change it for anything.  Life on the farm taught me many lessons that I have carried with me into adulthood.

  • Determination and Commitment – When I got bucked off a horse, the world didn’t stop turning for me, I had to get right back on and ride.  You taught me that when something isn’t going right, you don’t give up, you dig your heels in and finish the job.
  • Roll with the Punches –  Things don’t always go as expected on a farm… you’ve got a 30 acre field of hay cut and an unexpected thunderstorm rolls in, or a heifer is having problems calving at 2 in the morning, you’ve got to deal with the obstacles as they come at you, not everything can be done by the book…. Not so different than the hurdles I face in life now.
  • Caring – Farmers care about the welfare of their sources of livelihood – the livestock and the land – like no other profession I’ve ever come across.  You taught me this.  How many corporate folk do you know that would go out in the driving rain and sleet to help a downed cow?  I can’t name any.  That’s part of a farmer’s job though.  You care about the quality of life of your animals and that extends to caring about others as well.  When a neighboring farmer is going through a hard time and needs help getting the crops in, we helped.  You don’t stand by and watch others struggle, you do what you can to lift them up.
  • Respect – You taught me to respect my elders, the land and the animals we raised.  Without them, we wouldn’t have anything.
  • Be Independent and Work Hard– You can’t rely on others for everything.  You taught me that if I wanted something I had to work for it and do it myself.  There wasn’t going to be any magical Fairy Godmother to wave her wand and pay for my first car or my college tuition.  You taught me how to change a tire so I wouldn’t have to be stuck on the side of the road waiting for help.

This is just a short list of the things you taught me, but what I’m really trying to say is, thank you Dad, from the bottom of my heart.  I appreciate all the lessons learned and quality time spent together.   Without you and Mom showing me the ropes of farm life, I don’t think I would be the person I am today.  And to all the other farm parents who have created such an amazing environment in which to raise their families, you are appreciated.

Becky FinfrockBecky Finfrock
ICGA/ICMB Communications Assistant

 

 

NATIONAL WRITE A LETTER OF APPRECIATION WEEK

Did you know this week is National Write a Letter of Appreciation Week? If you’d like to write a letter to a farmer, rancher, parent, grandparent, etc… we’d like to feature it here on our blog! Send your letters to ilcorn@ilcorn.org and we’ll also throw in a special gift for taking part!

Our first letter comes from Christopher Carpenter of Granby, Missouri:   

Dear Dad,

I owe everything I’ve learned in my entire life to you. It was you that taught me how to use a socket wrench to take off my training wheels, change my oil, and fix numerous other things. You took time out of your day to teach me and my brother all that you knew about farming and cattle. You raised us in a way so that when grew up we could support ourselves and eventually our families. You raised us in a place that others only see on the internet, where you can drive down the road and know everyone you meet. A place that people recognize you, and the person that you are, by your last name. But most importantly, you raised us up right, it was the man that you were on us that made us the men we are today and will be into the future.

Thank you for everything you’ve ever done and continue to do.

Christopher CarpenterCarpenters