Which excuse do you like best?

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HDRider

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Or, maybe you have one not on the list.

‘Why can’t you make any money with cattle?

It’s the government’s fault because they haven’t regulated the packer

It’s the governments fault because they over-regulated me

It’s the corn market creating this corn to cattle spread

It’s my neighbor’s fault because he charged me too much for the hay, I bought from him

It’s China’s fault because they aren’t keeping up their end of the trade agreement

It’s the stockyard’s fault because they sold my calves late in the day’ (end of paraphrasing)

 

mayesfarm

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I am sure that things are different in different parts of the country, but in my part of Middle TN the vast majority of the cow/calf operations are just a bunch of pets. Some folks here have coon hounds, others have cows and they are tickled to take what ever they get for their calves because, just like puppies, they can't keep them all.
 

kenny thomas

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I am sure that things are different in different parts of the country, but in my part of Middle TN the vast majority of the cow/calf operations are just a bunch of pets. Some folks here have coon hounds, others have cows and they are tickled to take what ever they get for their calves because, just like puppies, they can't keep them all.
I totally agree. Most in my area just sell calves when the mood hits them.
 

TCFRH

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Here's my excuse...I raise Herefords because it's what my husband's grandfather raised, they're calm, they're pretty, and I know I'm going to take a dock at the sale barn because they're not black (e.g., they're never the color the buyers want around here). Not complaining, we're just a small cow/calf operation, though we do run on a breeding/weaning/selling schedule, and do this to keep us busy outside the paying jobs.
 

Lucky

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When I have a bad year my reason is always the same, it’s not on the list though ..... Myself. I didn’t do all I could have to make sure I’m profitable. Until you stop making excuses and find what works for you you’ll never be successful. We all knew what we were getting into when we took on the cattle.
Article was a good read, thanks again HDR
 

callmefence

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I got one....I have unrealistic expectations about how much income I should be able to generate of the amount of cattle my land will support.

Kinda like the guy who wonders why he can't compete in the earthmoving business with a shovel and a wheelbarrow.
 

Lucky

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I got one....I have unrealistic expectations about how much income I should be able to generate of the amount of cattle my land will support.

Kinda like the guy who wonders why he can't compete in the earthmoving business with a shovel and a wheelbarrow.
Watch it now Fence you gonna hurt some feelings. I say this same thing all the time and get the craziest looks. There’s allot of folks in the cattle biz that obviously do not know how to use a calculator.
 
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HDRider

HDRider

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In 1964 live cattle sold for $21 dollars. That equates to $177 today


 

sim.-ang.king

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In 1964 live cattle sold for $21 dollars. That equates to $177 today


Oh, inflation, that thing that doesn't exist unless you are selling retail.
 

farmerjan

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A couple years ago a former extension agent said that if we were to look at prices of cattle in the same way we talk about inflation in general, that feeder cattle at the stockyard would be bringing between 2.75 and 3.00 lb. I can see it in the charts that @HDRider provided.
Years ago, cattleman and farmers worked their butts off, as they do today, with all the increased available advantages of modern equipment.....but they could MAKE A LIVING and actually prosper.... not get rich, but make a living. Years ago, a man could be the sole "breadwinner" and provide a living for their family.
Yes there were bad times, bad years, but there were MANY families that lived off one income, and maybe they didn't have everything they wanted, but they had what they NEEDED.
How many of us could live on 2.50 feeders now? I know I sure could...if the prices for cattle had kept up with inflation.

And it is going to get worse now.... I remember in the 60's and 70's....interest rates in the 8-16% bracket for loans.... and people were much more willing to do what was needed to still have a 'life" at home....
 

greybeard

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It cost me about $40 to put up a ton of hay

That would equate to a cost of less than $5 in 1964
Round balers didn't show up around here much until the mid or late 70s, maybe a little later. I was overseas thru most of the late 60s and early 70s so I don't know much about how ag was in those years but I vividly remember the mid sixties.

It cost about a nickle a bale just to get each 45-50lb sq bale picked up out of the field and stacked in the barn in the mid 60s.
2000 lb ÷ 50 lbs=40 bales.
$0.05 x 40= $2.
That doesn't take into account what it cost in fuel and labor for the tractor, rake, baler, etc.

(As a teenager, I hauled a sheitpot full of it in those mid-60 years every summer, for a nickle each bale and one year, up to the princely sum of 7¢ a bale.)

The 1st round baler I ever saw made itty bitty bales no bigger or heavier than a conventional sq bale. It was an Allis Chalmers machine.
 
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HDRider

HDRider

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Round balers didn't show up around here much until the mid or late 70s, maybe a little later. I was overseas thru most of the late 60s and early 70s so I don't know much about how ag was in those years but I vividly remember the mid sixties.

It cost about a nickle a bale just to get each 45-50lb sq bale picked up out of the field and stacked in the barn in the mid 60s.
2000 lb ÷ 50 lbs=40 bales.
$0.05 x 40= $2.
That doesn't take into account what it cost in fuel and labor for the tractor, rake, baler, etc.

(As a teenager, I hauled a sheitpot full of it in those mid-60 years every summer, for a nickle each bale and one year, up to the princely sum of 7¢ a bale.)

The 1st round baler I ever saw made itty bitty bales no bigger or heavier than a conventional sq bale. It was an Allis Chalmers machine.
Thanks, I was hoping someone would do the look back and compare.

I too hauled hay. I was a skinny runt and it was work. I had a buddy that would grab a bale with each hand and shoot them on the wagon. Me, not so much. Getting one up there for the stacker was a struggle. It has been a while, but I think we were paid by the hour. Hopefully my buddy got twice my pay.
 

Ky hills

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Growing up we had a John Deere square baler. Daddy wasn’t a big man but he made heavy bales. Everybody that handled them complained. I was small and skinny too, and those bales weighed almost as much as me. I could barely get them up on the wagon We got a Vermeer roll baler in 1992 when I was around 17.
 

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