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MSU Extension releases new budgeting tool for all crops


EAST LANSING, MI. – MSU planning tools help make well-informed decisions, a critical part of succeeding in today’s farm economy.

Planning tools can be helpful for improving profitability, productivity, and minimizing potential risks to your farm business. MSU Extension offers a variety of planning tools, including various Crop Budget Estimators. These Microsoft Excel-based tools have previously been offered in versions for grain or forage crops. Now a new version offers planning assistance for all crops. 

Whether you raise fruits, vegetables, or small grains, the new “all crops” version offers a starting point for your budget planning needs. It highlights key decision areas to consider as you plan for and evaluate your growing season. It also uses your own farm records in the planning process. This includes marketing and yield goals as well as cost of production break-evens.  

Additional features seen in other versions are also available in the “all crop” tool. A fertilizer calculator can assist in creating your nutrient cost estimates. If crop rotation is a part of your plan, the optimization tool will help you determine the best crop mix to maximize profitability. To check out the new “all crops” version of the Crop Budget Estimator, visit: https://www.canr.msu.edu/resources/crop-budget-estimator-all-crops  

Detailed Forage and Grain Tools Updated 

The detailed tools for forage and grain offer an in-depth analysis of your farm’s budget planning. A recent update allows you to input more chemical and fertilizer products. This offers flexibility to develop a budget based on specific farm products you intend to use, including pre-mixes, generic brands, or new-to-market chemical products not covered in the MSU Weed Guide. Adding in new fertilizer products can ensure your crop nutrient plan meets your yield and profitability goals.  

This feature builds upon the current decision-making features within the tools, which include: 

• Marketing and yield goals 

• Chemical program and weed resistance planning 

• Fertilizer program planning and plant nutrient management  

• Financing impacts of purchases and loans 

• Optimization of crop planting mix 

• Break-even analysis 

To access these tools, visit the MSU Extension farm business team’s budget and cost of production website at www.canr.msu.edu/farm_management/budgets-cost-of-production.