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Agrimarketing : October 2007
FOCUS ON: MARKET RESEARCH UNDERSTANDING THE LARGEST GROWERS by John Kelly and John Tubaugh Gone are the days of offering the same products, services and dis- tribution networks to all grow- ers. Manufacturers must understand the needs and desires of the largest commercial growers to prosper in today's farm economy. Growers not only want products that are priced competitively, they also expect manu- facturers to understand and adapt to their high-tech service needs, espe- cially among the largest farms that account for only 22% of farm opera- tors, but 49% of all farm acres. Kelly Research Group, Inc. and Tubaugh and Associates conducted a recent study of large growers. The study --- Marketing Products and Ser- vices to Commercial Farmers --- involved random telephone inter- views with 500 growers with gross farm incomes (GFI) over $100,000. Average size of all farms repre- sented in the study is 1,409 acres with highest income farms ($500K +) coming in at 3,167 acres and $100- $499K farms averaging 924 acres. The trend toward fewer but larger farms is expected to continue and farm size will continue to expand at an increasing rate of nearly 6% annually. By 2012, the "average" U.S. commer- cial farm is expected to expand from 1,409 acres currently to 1,852 acres. Study results also show that farm operators with high dollar sales ($500K+) are quick to adopt new technologies and rely heavily on the Internet. OTHER SIGNIFICANT FINDINGS • Second year/continuous corn acres are expected to increase rapidly. • Ethanol destined corn acres are estimated to approach 18% of total acres in 2007. • Equipment leasing will increase in future years and regional differ- ences do exist. • Preferences for generic pesticides vary by region. • Changes farmers need to make in the near future to bolster financial prosperity include: control costs/ increase efficiencies, enhance rev- enues, expand operation, and embrace new technologies. • (46%) of growers indicate they have children who could take over their farming operation. • Cell phones, ATVs, TV satellite dishes and no-till planters are among the most commonly found types of equipment on farms regardless of farm size. For more information on this study, e-mail John Kelly, kelly firstname.lastname@example.org or call 314/631-3666. AM 56 AgriMarketing October 2007 With each trip to the field, Millennium Research uncovers a bounty of opportunities to nurture existing customers and cultivate new prospects. The answers we harvest put marketers ahead in the quest to grow customer satisfaction. Millennium Research transforms market data into innovative, customer-preferred products, communications strategies and marketing programs. If you seek new ways to reap fresh ideas, ask us about customer advisory boards, Internet industry panels and our innovative idea generation process. Helping to grow businesses has been the legacy of Millennium Research, Inc. since 1997. Call for a free consultation. Jan Johnson, Managing Director • Phone: (952) 431-6320 • email@example.com Millennium Research Inc. • 7493 W. 147th Street • Suite 201 • Apple Valley, MN 55124 We Harvest Answers Good questions. Better answers.
November December 2006
November December 2007