Most Recent Blog Posts

Dec 01, 2008

Economy's effect on ranchers

So what's the projected impact of the financial crisis on ranchers? The value of the U.S. dollar is going to be a major driver of beef exports, and....More
Dec 01, 2008

Marketing in the new conditions

I'm not sure the general public really appreciates how close this country was to an economic meltdown in September/October 2008. There's little doubt....More
Nov 01, 2008

Lowering your breakeven - part II

This month, I'll share a primary database I use in benchmarking a ranch. The data is taken from the 2007 annual North Dakota Farm Business Management....More
Oct 01, 2008

Lowering Your Breakeven Calf Price

Benchmarking is among the most powerful ranch-management tools available to ranch managers, and one of the least used. A key reason for its lack of....More
Sep 01, 2008

Marketing 2008 calves

Part V in a series of changing corn environment. The corn market is proving to be as volatile as predicted. With the impact of the Midwest floods less....More
Aug 01, 2008

Find your red flags

Part IV in a series on the changing corn environment. The original renewable fuels standard (RFS) triggered the current expansion in ethanol....More
Jul 01, 2008

Optimal production/marketing system

Part III in a series on the changing corn environment. We all understand that different ranch production/marketing systems lead to different financial....More
Jun 01, 2008

The changing corn environment

Part II: Short-term management implications The bottom line to the changing corn environment is that feedlot costs of gain (COG) will increase....More
Apr 01, 2008

2008 grass cattle planning prices

After 30 years of government-supported and stabilized corn markets, the new biofuels era features no government- or farmer-held corn reserves and....More
Mar 01, 2008

Buy/sell margins - part III

The feeder-cattle futures market is being whipsawed by corn futures prices. Corn futures prices were in the mid-to-high $3 range early in 2007,....More
Jan 01, 2008

Price forecasting part 1

Producers often tell me that one bottleneck to strategic planning of marketing is not knowing which planning prices to use. Thus, I am sharing with....More
Oct 01, 2007

2007's calf-marketing opportunities

Biofuels are impacting today's marketing decisions. As 2006 corn prices escalated in response to ethanol demand, it became clear that relative prices....More
Sep 13, 2007

Q&A with Harlan Hughes

Do you have a question or comment for Harlan Hughes? E-mail Harlan, and he'll respond as quickly as possible. If your letter seems of general....More
Sep 13, 2007

Harlan Hughes' Favorite Links

BEEF magazineCattlemen Coping with WinterKSU Livestock....More
Sep 01, 2007

Benchmarks for the ethanol era

Having conducted Integrated Resource Management (IRM) cash-flow analyses for individual ranchers for 20+ years, I fully understand a ranch must cash....More

Harlan Hughes

Harlan Hughes is a North Dakota State University professor emeritus and author of the monthly "Market Advisor" column that appears in BEEF magazine. He also consults and lectures widely,...
What's Market Advisor?

Harlan Hughes has spent a professional lifetime helping U.S. beef producers better manage the business end of their beef cow operations.

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