Highest Farm Income in Eight Years, But One-Third Comes from Government

Government Aid Would Equal One-Third of Net Farm Income, Down from Last Year but Still Larger than Average


By Chuck Abbott, Successful Farming

Agriculture.com - 9/3/2021


Higher prices for corn, soybeans, hogs, cattle, and broiler chickens top U.S. ag products will boost net farm income to $113 billion this year, the highest since 2013, estimated the Agriculture Department on Thursday. Income would be 26% higher than the 10-year average, reflecting the economy-wide recovery from the pandemic.


Government aid would equal one-third of net farm income, down from last year but still larger than average. Last year, direct federal payments and crop insurance indemnities accounted for more than half of farm income, a broad measure of profits. Farm subsidy and land stewardship programs usually run at $10 billion to $15 billion annually. Coronavirus aid programs pushed farm supports to record highs last year.


Thanks to surging commodity prices, farmers will pocket an additional $64.3 billion in crop and livestock receipts, an 18% increase from 2020, said USDA economists. Corn and soybeans would generate $36 billion of the increase. Receipts from hogs would climb by $9.4 billion, cattle by $8.3 billion, and broilers by $7.3 billion. In percentage terms, corn, soybeans, hogs, cattle, and broilers will all see double-digit increases in receipts...