December 29, 2017
The Seasons of Agriculture
With the close of 2017, it’s important to examine the trends and events that are impacting the agriculture industry. It’s time to raise the periscope to view the drivers of change next year and beyond. Thus, let’s follow the cycles.
October 2, 2017
Megatrends 2018 to 2025
The terms “perceptual acuity” and “20/20 foresight” stuck in my mind during an impromptu brainstorming session at a recent agricultural conference. At this casual meeting, the intellectual energy flowed like water, and bounced around to a wide range of topics. I jotted down notes on a napkin, capturing some of which were macro factors while others were at the grassroots level. Let’s take a look at some thoughts that emerged from this informal power session.
July 10, 2017
Views from the Road
From interactions and discussions with producers, lenders, government agencies and agribusinesses around the country, several pertinent trends to examine appear. These observations point to the state of the state of agriculture, and to changes transforming the landscape of today’s industry. As we approach the quarter-century mark of 2025, it is important to review agriculture’s recent economic evolution as well as emerging trends that will carry the industry into the future.
April 5, 2017
World Economics at a Crossroad
Today, the economics of agriculture, as well as the general economy, stand at a crossroad with uncertainty in each direction. Further, the propensity and magnitude of change in agriculture and rural sectors add to the unknown. As we attempt to plan around those unknown elements, it is useful to identify the most likely sources of disruption and change.
January 6, 2017
Over the course of the year, I observed the changing landscape of agriculture. Through my travel, networking, presentations and participation in numerous events, I witnessed the dynamics and shifts in different sectors of the industry.
September 30, 2016
Slow Growth Orbit
Today’s economic realities show sporadic as well as weak growth, both domestically and internationally. In agriculture, economic challenges are magnified as the industry continues to adjust after the recent years of stellar economic growth and the commodity super cycle.
June 30, 2016
Oh millennials! Those individuals18 to 34 years of age are changing the world. The millennial generation now numbers over 80 million and demographically have become the “pig in the python” exceeding the baby boomer generation, or those born between 1946 in 1964.
March 31, 2016
Anatomy of a Recession
As the year 2016 progresses, more discussions center around the possibility of recession. With extreme world market volatility, stock market twists and political uncertainty, one has to be alert for the possibility of recession in the general economy and, more importantly, in the agricultural and rural economies.
December 31, 2015
The first 15 years of the 21st century are in the history books. In this time period, many catalysts for change, along with various twists and turns, created an economic environment full of surprises for agriculture. In ten years, a quarter of this century will be gone. For continued success, it is important to discuss future direction based on the past and examine those issues in front of agricultural strategists.
September 30, 2015
Crucial Conversations from the Road
The speaking trail is often a laboratory of life laden with diverse sets of questions and challenges with individuals and their businesses. For this quarterly essay, I selected a series of pertinent questions which require considerable thought and crucial conversations. The most successful, progressive producers strive to manage for profit and growth while incrementally, improving the operation. Inevitably, most producers will cross several, if not all, of these important questions. Be prepared!