K-State economists to speak on state of American agriculture, carbon credits

By Pat Melgares, K-State Research and Extension news service

MANHATTAN, Kan. – A pair of Kansas State University agricultural economists will give updates on the state of the U.S. agricultural economy, and the state of carbon credit programs, during the 58th annual Mid America Farm Expo in Salina March 22-24.

The annual event, considered one of the largest Spring Farm Shows in the Midwest, is being held at the Tony’s Pizza Event Center and Saline County Expo Center. More than 300 exhibits are expected to be on display, representing approximately 275 U.S. companies.

There is no cost to attend and the public is invited to attend. The event is a joint effort of the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce and K-State Research and Extension’s Central Kansas District.

K-State agricultural economist Micah Cameron-Harp will present ‘The State of Carbon Credit Programs’ on Thursday, March 23 at 10 a.m. He said carbon credit programs have grown in popularity in recent years.

“But,” he notes, “there is a lot of uncertainly concerning the costs and benefits of participation. By the end of my talk, I hope producers will be able to articulate how these costs and benefits will vary depending on the program in question and the characteristics of their farming operation.”

Cameron-Harp said agricultural carbon credit programs are relatively new, whereas other sectors – such as forestry – have offered such credits longer.

“The emerging agricultural carbon credits have some competitive advantages that are worth emphasizing,” he said. “Understanding the areas where agricultural carbon credits excel or struggle is crucial when trying to understand the trajectory of these emerging markets.”

Later that same day, K-State agricultural economist Brian Briggeman will give a presentation titled, The U.S. Ag Economy: How are we looking?,’ at 1:30 p.m. He said he plans to lead a discussion on how Kansas farmers can best respond to an uncertain future.

“Many local, national and global forces are impacting Kansas farmers,” Briggeman said. “These forces include rising interest rates, questions about farmland values and a potential recession.

“While interest rates are rising in the short term, there are some indicators that rates will fall in the future. It is critically important for Kansas farmers not to lose sight of the fundamentals of maintaining and managing their operation’s finances.”

Other presentations planned for this year’s Mid America Farm Expo include:

Wednesday, March 22 

  • Basics of farm transition planning (Shannon Ferrell, Oklahoma State University), 10 a.m.
  • Mechanics of Building a Farm Legacy: Transactional Tools for Farm Transitions (Ferrell), 1:30 p.m.

Friday, March 24

  • Grain and Livestock Market Outlook (Don Close and Cody Barilla of Terrain Ag), 10 a.m.

More information about this year’s Mid America Farm Expo is available online at https://www.salinakansas.org/midamericafarmexpo.html

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