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Economic Sustainability Tools for Agronomic Crops- NC Academy

As margins continue to tighten for crop producers, it is even more important for producers to manage costs.   Producers are looking for tools that can help them understand their cost of production not just on a whole farm basis but also on a field-by-field basis. Many of the Excel tools or other crop budgeting tools that are currently available are very extensive and confusing. We have developed a much simpler tool that producers can utilize to show landlords the cost of production on their farm, compare areas of a farm, understand how changing one input can affect the bottom line, or just develop a better marketing plan by knowing their cost of production. A unique aspect with this tool is that inputs can be entered on a per acre, per field, or per farm basis to make it easier to determine cost of production based on how producers’ bills come. This tool is designed to be more than a budgeting tool, but a spreadsheet that can be updated throughout the year as the growing season influences producers’ management decisions on inputs. The tool also includes links to science and research-based resources that can be used to help make input decisions. In addition to the cost of production tool, we’ve developed a slide set, six case studies, and participant survey that Extension professionals can utilize for their own extension programming.  


This webinar will provide a brief overview and explanation of the cost of production tool and other resources our team created. This project was created as part of the 2017 North Central ANR Cropping Systems Academy

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About the Extension Foundation

The Extension Foundation was formed in 2006 by Extension Directors and Administrators. Today, the Foundation partners with Cooperative Extension through liaison roles and a formal plan of work with the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) to increase system capacity while providing programmatic services, and helping Extension programs scale and investigate new methods and models for implementing programs. The Foundation provides professional development to Cooperative Extension professionals and offers exclusive services to its members. In 2020 and 2021, the Extension Foundation has awarded 85% of its direct funding back to the Cooperative Extension System, 100% of funds are used to support Cooperative Extension initiatives. 

This technology is supported in part by New Technologies for Agriculture Extension grant no. 2020-41595-30123 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture and membership funding. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the content are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For more information, please visit You can view the terms of useat

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