2015 Illinois Farm Economics Summit Scheduled

   Should cash rents be lowered? Will fertilizer and seed prices decline and provide some measure of relief? What do margins look like if grain prices recover to longer-term averages? These and other questions will be addressed at this year’s Illinois Farm Economics Summit in December.
   “The big story in Illinois agriculture in 2015 was the ‘margin squeeze’ faced by crop producers,” said U of I agricultural economist Scott Irwin. “This squeeze was brought on by continued declines in corn and soybean prices and costs of production that remained at historically high levels. The key question going forward is how the crop sector will adjust to this new reality.”
   Speakers from the University of Illinois Extension farmdoc team will explore the farm profitability outlook and management challenges from several perspectives, including the 2015 outlook for prices, farm income prospects, land rents and valuation, long-term credit cycles, nutrient management, and the outlook for conventional bio-fuels.
Irwin said that the format for the meetings will be fast-paced and allow plenty of time for questions from the audience.
   Sponsored by U of I Extension, the farm economics summit will be offered at five different locations during the month of December.
   The dates and locations are as follows:
   • Monday, Dec. 14 - Champaign, iHotel and Conference Center
   • Tuesday, Dec. 15 – DeKalb, Faranda’s Banquet Center
   • Wednesday, Dec. 16 – Peoria, Peoria Civic Center
   • Thursday, Dec. 17 – Springfield, Crowne Plaza
   • Friday, Dec. 18 – Mt. Vernon, Holiday Inn
   The sessions will begin at 7:45 a.m. and conclude at 1:30 p.m. The advance registration fee is $70 per person and includes lunch, refreshments, and all meeting materials. The online pre-registration deadline is Dec. 7, which includes a $5 discount. Registration at the door is $75 per person as space permits.
   For questions about registration, contact Nancy Simpson (nsimp1@illinois.edu; 217-244-9687).
   For the complete agenda and list of speakers, visit http://www.farmdoc.illinois.edu/ifes/2015/index.html. ∆
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