MARSHALL - The Linder Farm Network brought its annual series of Ag Outlook programs to Marshall on Wednesday morning.
The meeting was one of five presented by LFN and hosted by Lynn Ketelsen, whose daily markets and weather report is broadcast by 30 stations across Minnesota.
"What we're trying to do is bring experts in who farmers don't typically have access to," Ketelsen said. "Important topics this year are the dry weather, commodity prices, where they're going and what factors determine them. Land values and rental rates are up and farmers are trying to determine what to do next. If they expand, what it cost them?"
This year's series meeting was the 10th put on by LFN.
Fran Fier of Taunton, a member of the Lincoln County Soybean Board, was helping out at the meeting.
"I think they (farmers) get new information," Fier said. "This time of year it's far enough ahead of the holidays and too early to start planting. People are ready to get out and socialize. Most people listen to the LFN reports."
Speakers included experts on equipment and land values, weather, commodity prices, and international trade.
John Baize, president of the John C. Baize and Associates international agricultural trade consulting firm, gave a presentation on the effects of international events on farmers' bottom line.
"Most farmers in this part of the world grow corn and soybeans. In 1995 China was a net exporter of soybeans. Today China imports 60 percent of all U.S. soybean exports,"?he said.
"When I started as a farm broadcaster 35 years ago farmers didn't care what went on outside their own county," Ketelsen said. "Now they're aware of what goes on across the world."
Today, the LFN meeting is in North Mankato. The final meeting of the series will be on Friday in Owatonna.