(Courtesy of Purdue University Center for Commercial Agriculture)

The coronavirus pandemic has caused American farmers to feel less optimistic than before about their present and future. A recent national survey shows farmer sentiment is improving for a second month in a row after falling from its all-time highest point earlier this year.

(Courtesy of Purdue University Center for Commercial Agriculture)

A survey of farmer sentiment improved slightly in May after dropping substantially the last two months. Most respondents are still concerned about profitability due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.


Covid-19 outbreaks have forced several meatpacking plants across the United States to temporarily close, including a large Tyson meatpacking plant in Logansport, Indiana. The closures are starting to affect local meat farmers.

FILE PHOTO: Samantha Horton/IPB News

Indiana farmers will have one of their own representing them on the American Farm Bureau leadership.

Indiana Farm Bureau President Randy Kron has recently been elected to serve on the American Farm Bureau Federation’s board of directors during the annual national convention.

The national organization brings agricultural producers from across the country together advocating for issues facing the ag community.

Kron says he hopes to bring the challenges of Hoosier farmers to the national table.

Hoosier Farmers Welcome Signing Of USMCA Trade Deal

Feb 5, 2020
Samantha Horton/IPB News

President Donald Trump touted his recent signing of the United States-Canada-Mexico Agreement (USMCA) in his State of the Union address. Hoosier farmers are celebrating the new trade deal.

The USMCA will replace the North American Free Trade Agreement and is expected to slightly increase real gross domestic product by about $68 billion according to the U.S. International Trade Commission.

Canada and Mexico are two of Indiana’s top global trading partners.

Samantha Horton/IPB News

Many Indiana farmers want more health care options. On Wednesday, they got closer to that goal. An Indiana Senate committee approved a bill that would allow the state farm bureau to offer a group health plan including sole proprietors.

Samantha Horton/IPB News

Farmers across the Midwest are facing tight profit margins and rising healthcare costs. And that means some hold off getting medical treatment or forgo health insurance altogether. In response, some state farm bureaus are trying to fill that gap.

Low Commodity Prices and Rising Healthcare Costs

“We raised beef cattle primarily,” says Jacob Smoker, who chairs the Indiana Farm Bureau’s Young Ag and Professionals state group.

The sun is setting and Smoker does his evening chores feeding the cattle on his family’s farm in northern Indiana.

Samantha Horton/IPB News

Indiana farmers can expect to see a plateau in farm income over the next decade, according to one agriculture expert.

With thin profit margins expected to continue into the coming decade, farmers may choose to consolidate farms or diversify their crops and livestock. Some may even take off-farm jobs, as have done in the past when the farm economy has been stagnant.

Interim Study Committee Discusses Farmland Preservation

Sep 12, 2019
Samantha Horton/IPB News

Indiana lawmakers continue to talk about the state’s involvement in farmland preservation. The complex issue comes at a time when farmers are struggling.

The Interim Study Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources is looking at ways to protect Hoosier farmland while also encouraging economic growth. The committee was formed last session through a bill that was introduced on the topic.  

Farmers In All Indiana Counties Can Seek Disaster Aid

Aug 31, 2019
Samantha Horton/IPB News

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Gov. Eric Holcomb says farmers in all 92 Indiana counties are eligible for disaster assistance from the federal government after excessive rain and flooding.

The governor's office says farmers can apply for low interest loans to restore or replace property, pay for living expenses, refinance certain debts and reorganize. They must show at least a 30 percent loss in crop production or a physical loss to livestock, livestock products or real estate.

Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch says it's been an "unprecedented year for Indiana farmers."

Indiana And Michigan Farmers Eager To Begin Growing Hemp

May 26, 2019
Claire Harbage/NPR

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) — Farmers in Indiana and Michigan are preparing to grow hemp as a legal agricultural commodity following the declassification of industrial hemp as a narcotic with the passage of the federal Farm Bill in 2018.

President Donald Trump boosted tariffs Friday on Chinese imports from 10 to 25 percent. As trade talks continue, U.S. businesses warn the increase will hurt them and consumers.

Farmers For Free Trade Motorcade Stops In Indiana

Apr 17, 2019
Samantha Horton

A bipartisan farming group is touring the country to build support for the newly proposed trade agreement between the U.S., Canada and Mexico. The motorcade rolled into west central Indiana Wednesday to talk with farmers, industry leaders and lawmakers.

House Amends Hemp Bill, Restructures Advisory Committee

Apr 5, 2019

A House committee has restructured the membership of a hemp advisory committee – if growing the crop is legalized in the state.