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Tractor Talk Discussion Forum

Re: Organic!

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Author  [Modern View]

01-14-2014 10:53:54

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Some of what you say is right, some is wrong.

You mistake organic farming for farming by neglect. Sometime they go hand in hand, often they do not. Unfortunately, lots of bad organic farmers started out as bad conventional farmers. they think that all they have to do is "not spray chemicals"

I grew up on a conventional 60 cow dairy. Dad still farms, but no longer has dairy cattle. He has 2800 pigs grown on contract, 100 head of beefers, 400 acres crops, and a full time off-the-farm job. I married a wonderful girl 11 years ago and bought her dad's farm in 2010. We have been farming organic crops since 2005 and now also have 8400 organic laying hens. You are right that cropping would be difficult without the hens for manure. I am not farming by neglect.
My feed guy has been farming crops organic since the mid-2000s. He has to buy all his inputs and they get pretty expensive. He had a test plot on his farm last year and it averaged 137.5 bu/a over 27 varieties from 89 day to 112 day corn. This is about 50 bu/a below average for my county, BUT that corn is worth 10.50 to 12 per bushel right now. His plot sheet worked out all costs to be $702/a. At $10/bu, that's $673 profit.

But DON'T get into it for profit. I sprayed crops for UAP for 8 years before I bought this farm. I'm here for the lifestyle, not the profit. Some years, I could make more money conventional farming, some years, I do better because I'm organic farming.

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01-14-2014 12:20:42

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 Re: Organic! in reply to rockyridgefarm, 01-14-2014 10:53:54  
"lots of bad organic farmers started out as bad conventional farmers"

My guess would be that lots of bad organic farmers started out as yuppies with stars in their eyes and a political agenda.

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