Ag News, October 29, 2013

Printer Friendly
Bookmark and Share

Rabobank: Rise in Interest Rates Biggest Threat to Land Values

A surge in interest rates could result in a 15% to 20% decline in central U.S. farmland values, warn economists with Rabobank. But because the bulk of recent farmland purchases have been made with cash instead of financing, the report authors believe the potential contraction will be manageable. Login to Member Resources to download the latest edtion and continue reading on page 2: 

Always More Comps?
By Timothy L. Harpster, ARA

Always More Comps?  Appraisal Management Companies are typically third parties that serve as a conduit between the intended user of an appraisal and the appraiser, for a fee. AMCs came into residential appraiser’s lives with the passage of Dodd-Frank.   Actually my company has been doing business with AMCs for many years prior to Dodd- Frank, they just weren’t called an AMC.

A couple of my appraisers want to do only residential appraisals and they make a decent living from it.  Part of the mix includes work from AMCs and we have a couple good AMCs that we do work for.  What makes for a good AMC?  First is they are geographically competent.  They have reasonable expectations, that is they don’t expect all comps to be within a mile of the subject in a rural area.   There may not be three houses within a mile in some areas that we work in, let alone three sales.   A good reviewer will use reviewers that are licensed or certified appraisers and are well seasoned and have worked in the field and don’t work off of just a checklist.

A good AMC will offer reasonable fees or negotiate to reasonable fees and turn times.      Our office receives broadcasts, fax or email,  from some AMCs with terms that offer  low fees and unreasonable turn times.  I don’t know who does these assignments, it’s not us, but evidently somebody accepts.    The AMC’s we do business with pay on a regular schedule.   If we accept work from an AMC we don’t regularly work for, we’ll limit it to just one or two assignments till we get paid, then will do more.   When Taylor and Bean went bankrupt several years ago, we got stuck for a couple unpaid fees, but I’ve heard of several appraisers that got stuck with several thousand dollars in unpaid fees.  Yikes!
Several AMCs also manage commercial and agriculture appraisals, so they are not just residential.    They always want a “bid” and turn time but we’ll offer a fee “quote” and many times we’ll get the order.  I’m not into working as the low bidder, we’re not a low cost provider and have no intentions of being one.   Not all AMCs are bad, some are good to do business with, as long as you have good business practices and manage the process, working for an AMC can be good for your business.     Comment on this topic on the blog post.

Where is one-fifth of the world’s fresh water hiding?
By Chris Bennett

A parched planet looks on in envy. Water is running short across the globe and countries are fighting the War of the Straws, all vying for the most unique of resources. The mad scramble for water can be felt everywhere — almost.

But hidden in plain sight lies a liquid Shangri-La — the oldest, deepest, and most voluminous lake on Earth. Go 2,600 miles east of Moscow into the depths of Siberia and you will find one-fifth of the world’s fresh water — the crescent-shaped Lake Baikal.
Continue reading on the

Does a data-rich era threaten producer privacy?
From Agri-Pulse

Data privacy and ownership is the most pressing issue in a growing environment of products and services offered to farmers with the help of their farm-level data, analysts say.

“We’re in the very beginning phase of some pretty dramatic changes,” said American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) Deputy Chief Economist John Anderson, adding that he expects the sector to grow rapidly over the next three to five years.

The major concern, he noted, is what this data-rich era in agriculture means for personal privacy. “How do we ensure that this data is accessible but also secure?”

Anderson said state-level farm bureaus are working to develop policy proposals for the organization.
Missouri Farm Bureau Federation President Blake Hurst noted that value of data-driven products comes from individual farmers’ information, “but the real value is from putting it all together.”

“So who owns that data—the farmer or the company that puts it together?” he asks. It’s a question that is almost as old as the data gatherers, themselves.
Any solution will have to stand up in a legal and regulatory environment, Hurst noted.“My hope would be that we could come up with a set of principles that everyone in the business would adhere to,” he said.

Chris Batdorf, product marketing manager in John Deere’s Intelligent Solutions group, said the Wireless Data Transfer system is being developed with input from its customers. In August, Deere introduced the system on a limited basis and the company is still working with producers to refine it. Complex data policy issues are precisely the reason for delayed implementation, Batdorf said.

The Deere system offers three choices for customers to leverage their data through “MyJohnDeere.” They include machine data, production data and the use of anonymous data compiled with other growers’ information to provide a benchmarking service with a view of trends in certain areas.
“We want to be transparent with our customers and allow them to have choices with their data,” Batdorf said, who noted that crop insurance is one of the services provided through Deere’s production data. He said Deere and other agribusinesses are all “headed down a similar path” in their data usage systems.

Kansas State’s Barnaby noted that currently, “it is not real clear” who owns agricultural data. Theoretically, “if data was owned and controlled by farmer, then he could decide who to give it to.”
That is the model for Grower Information Services Cooperative (GISC), which describes itself as an advocate for the protection of U.S. growers’ ownership and control of the information surrounding their farming operations.

Billy Tiller, GISC director of business development, said Monsanto’s $930 million acquisition of The Climate Corporation proves data coming out of farm fields is extremely valuable.

Tiller wants to provide a neutral exchange where information can be stored and shared. GISC policy maintains that the future of efficient information flow must involve a system that helps collect, store, access and share growers’ information, “but the access to that information must totally be under the grower’s control.”

“It’s important to recognize the agriculture producer’s right to benefit from the data because it always originates with the grower,” Tiller said. “The way forward for U.S. agriculture includes improved efficiencies in sharing information and real intelligence gathered from data sets.”

Ray Brownfield Voted Illinois Land Broker of the Year

Bloomington, IL, October 9, 2013 — Ray Brownfield, ALC, received the honor of being named Land Broker of the Year by the Illinois Farm & Land Chapter of the REALTORS® Land Institute (RLI) at its annual meeting. Brownfield was recognized for his accomplishments as well as his dedication and service to the community. His nomination acknowledged his professionalism and ethics as a REALTOR®, and his knowledge and expertise when dealing with the Illinois land market. Download the RLI press release and read more.

George Luther, ARA, Appointed to Montana State Board of Real Estate Appraisers

Montana Governor Bullock appointed two new members last week to the State Board of Real Estate Appraisers.  Pete Fontana from Great Falls was reappointed.  He has previously served two terms, and then has been off the board for a least one term.  The second appointment is Mr. George Luther, ARA of Miles City. Luther replaces Dennis Hoeger, ARA.

Top 5 Reasons to Attend AgroNomics Vision 2014…Still Time to Register

1. Networking, networking, networking. Take advantage of the many opportunities to connect with peers, meet new friends, and network with rural asset managers, valuation professionals, investors, and agribusiness gurus.

2. Experts, know how, and program sessions. Hear from an exciting roster of experts, including Karen Ross, California Department of Food and Agriculture; Dr. Robert T. Fraley, Executive Vice President & Chief Technology Office with Monsanto, Daniel A. Sumner, UC Davis, Trey Hill, Harbor View Farms, Ernest Earon, Ph.D., PrecisionHawk Labs, Erik Ehn, Precision Farming and Guidance, Dr. David Kohl, Virginia Tech, and K.C. Conway, MAI, CRE, Colliers International USA. Visit with the industry’s finest at the Trade Show.

3. Peppermill Resort Spa Casino and Reno. Luxury and amenities abound, food and fun provide the perfect backdrop for AgroNomics Vision 2014. Come and experience the Wild West. Enjoy a tour of the region and visit an operational air base and local family farm.

4. ASFMRA Business Meetings and Celebrations. Meet with like-minded professionals to share best practices, solve problems, and get advice. Debate the future of rural asset management and valuation. Share in the celebration and recognize ASFMRA members, business partners, and newly accredited member for outstanding contributions and their commitment to our industry. Take part in the Education Foundation Silent & Live Auction. Bid for items and support the Education Foundation. Have fun, socialize, and walk away with fabulous items.

5. Rural asset management and valuation education. Promote our profession and nurture your career. Refresh you knowledge base and learn about emerging practices, technology, and methodology. Stay up to date through continuing education, knowledge generation, and the latest research.

Register Now. Get complete info.

Food Safety – Colorado Melon Farmers Sue Inspector
From The Denver Post

Food safety issues
Read more:

Thank You to the South Dakota Chapter

The Education Foundation of the ASFMRA wishes to extend a huge THANK YOU to the South Dakota Chapter for their generous donation of $1,000 to the Education Foundation. The Foundation is a non-profit organization which was formed to serve the professions of agricultural consulting, farm management, rural appraisal, and review appraisal through the development of educational programs for professional advancement. Tax-deductible contributions such as the South Dakota Chapter’s along with that of many other members, state Chapters, and corporate sponsors continue to help the Foundation to fund significant educational programs, research projects, communication, leadership development, innovation, public understanding, and knowledge of agriculture and stewardship of resources. Again, thank you to all members of the South Dakota Chapter.

Donate to the Auction Today!

Plan now to attend this year’s Education Foundation Auction in Reno on Thursday, November 14, 2013. You do not want to miss your opportunity to bid and win!

Your search for that unique item for a Christmas gift, birthday item, or just something for yourself is over! Additional items received for the 2013 Auction include:

Templeton Rye donated by Tim Fevold, AFM
Tile Wall Hanging donated by David GaNun, ARA
Summitville Covellite Necklace and Pendant; Creede Agate Necklace and Pendant; and Columbine Blue Agate Necklace and Pendant all donated by the Colorado Chapter ASFMRA
Made in Montana Gift Basket donated by Warren Land and Livestock
AgWare Gift Certificate donated by Consolidated Appraisal Services Company
Chukar Cherries from Washington donated by Deon Herndon, ARA
Chuckar Cherries from Washington donated by the Washington Chapter ASFMRA
Washington’s Finest Beef Steaks donated by Hatley/Cobb Farmland Management and the Washington Chapter ASFMRA
Dry Fly Spirits Handcrafted in Pacific Northwest donated by Agri/Com Appraisals
Randy Meyer Print “Wolf Creek Crossing” donated by the Oklahoma Chapter ASFMRA
Amana Mission Wall Clock donated by Hertz Farm Management, Inc.
Niagara Falls Trip; and Four ½ Gallon Jugs of Maple Syrup all donated by Dick and Conni Edmunds
Amana Tambour Clock donated by Kirk and Ann Weih
Georgia Pecans donated by the Georgia Chapter ASFMRA
Amish Crafted Wooden Rocking Horse donated by the Missouri Chapter ASFMRA
Hand Made Wooden 5 Car Toy Train Set donated by Boyd Harris
18” Farm Girl Doll donated by Brenda DeVries, ARA
Handcrafted Dominoes out of Mesquite Wood donated by Keith Barlow, ARA
Framed Picture “Almost Home”; Framed Picture “Evening Harvest”; and Framed Picture “Snowbirds” all donated by DuPont Pioneer
Set of 6 Drinking Glasses Hand Painted donated by Donald and Lora Fisher and Scott and Kelly Fisher
Allis Chalmers D-15 Model Tractor Collectible donated by Don and Doris Cochran
Cat 07E Track Type Tractor Model donated by the Illinois Chapter ASFMRA
Brown & Black Jacket with ASFMRA logo; Cabela’s Stonewash Work Shirt with ASFMRA logo; Olive Work Shirt with Society Insignia; Croft & Barrow Blue Oxford Dress Shirt with Society Insignia; Blue Pinpoint Oxford Long Sleeve Shirt with Society Insignia; Gray Polo Style Shirt with ASFMRA Insignia; Sage Polo Shirt with ASFMRA Insignia all donated by Pepper Appraisal Services, LLC
Sheep Dip Scotch Whiskey donated by Howard Audsley, ARA
Bottle of Scotch donated by John Ross
“America’s Heartland” by Dave Barnhouse donated by Syngenta
North Carolina Grown 6-7’ Fraser Fir Christmas Tree; and 24” Mixed Greens Wreath with Bow all donated by the North Carolina Chapter ASFMRA
North Carolina Grown 6-7’ Fraser Fir Christmas Tree; and 24” Mixed Greens Wreath with Bow all donated by Steve and Jane Motsinger
Vintage Pioneer Seed Bag donated by Bret Cude
Two New Mexico Pecan Gift Baskets donated by the New Mexico Chapter ASFMRA
2 Day – 2 Night South Dakota Pheasant Hunt for 2 donated by Dave Englund, AFM; Jim Farrell, AFM; and Dave Knutson
Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth Gift Certificate donated by Williams & Associates, Inc.

Donations of all sorts are welcome, from baskets of goodies to vacations. Proceeds from the Auction go to support the Education Foundation and helps to create and/or update education for all members.

Please complete the Auction Item Donation form and return to Hope Evans ( or fax: 303.758.0190) to submit items for the Silent and Live Auctions.

Auction items should be shipped directly to the Peppermill Hotel & Casino to arrive no later than Thursday, November 7, 2013. Please address packages as follows:

HOLD FOR: Hope Evans
ASFMRA Annual Meeting / Nov. 11 -15
c/o Peppermill Bell Desk
Peppermill Hotel & Casino
2707 South Virginia Street
Reno, NV 89502
*Recipients contact cell phone number (not required but highly recommended)

For more information, visit the Agro-Nomics Web site or contact Hope Evans at (303) 692-1216 or

In Memory

J. Tomas Bradley, Jr., ARA-Retired – Bay Minette, AL – The ASFMRA was honored to welcome J. Thomas Bradley, Jr., ARA-Retired into the membership in 1985. He obtained his Accredited Rural Appraiser (ARA) designation in 1991. Tom maintained his Accredited membership until he transferred to the Retired membership classification in 2011. Tom served as the 2006 Alabama Chapter Vice President and served on the National ASFMRA Ethics Committee from 1995 to 1998. He also served on the National ASFMRA Appraisal Review Committee from 2001 to 2003 and then again from 2005 to 2006. You can read Tom’s obituary for more information. Tom made many friends through his association with the Society who will miss him greatly. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family. Obituary:

Gary Hessler, ARA Scottsbluff, NE - The ASFMRA was honored to welcome Gary into the membership as a Professional member in 1974. Gary obtained his Accredited Rural Appraiser (ARA) designation in 1992. He was a member of the Nebraska Chapter and he had also belonged to the Wyoming Chapter. Gary passed away on October 15, 2013 and the funeral was held on October 21, 2013. He made many friends through his association with the Society who will miss him greatly. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.Laughlin Youree

Laughlin Youree - Readyville, TN - The ASFMRA has just received noticed of the passing of Laughlin Youree. He passed away in February 2013. It was with great pleasure that Laughlin Youree was welcomed into the membership of the ASFMRA as an Associate member in 1990. He served as the Tennessee Chapter Membership Committee Chair from 2006 to 2007. Laughlin made many friends through his association with the Society who will miss him greatly. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.

Personal Conference Concierge

Use your smart phone or tablet for instant access to conference details

1. Scan the QR code or download the app
2. Open the app
3. Access your digital guide
Get instant access to program sessions, information on speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors, conference schedule and locations. Use on your iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, or Windows 8.

Control Insects with Insight

Say hello to the Syngenta Bug Squad, an all-new, elite team of experts created to offer invaluable insight, recommendations and solutions on the topic of above- and below-ground corn insect control. Stop by the Syngenta booth at ASFMRA and talk to Syngenta Bug Squad member, Craig Abell, or check out his Ag Innovations presentation on Thursday, Nov. 14, at 8:20 a.m. You can also visit for more information or tweet an insect question using the hashtag #BugSquad.

Your Personal Online Conference Concierge. Choose to view the agenda by all sessions, your own agenda, by speaker, time, or customize for how you want it. Add sessions to your own personal conference agenda (just tap the heart icon). View all relevant info for any session: Who, When, Where, Details.
Register today!
Join hundreds of agriculture experts, enthusiasts, and investors in Reno, Nevada, in the luxurious Peppermill Resort Spa Casino.

Learn More about AgroNomics Vision 2014 >>

Back to top.