2023 Annual Report
January 2024 | By: James Mintert
Letter from the Director
Thanks for checking in to see what we’ve been up to at the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture during 2023. One thing we’ve learned over the last decade is that U.S. farmers and agribusiness staff like to receive information and education in a wide variety of formats and we’ve responded by providing in-person programs, webinars and videos, podcasts, short web postings, occasional long-form articles, decision aids and tools! I’ll provide some key highlights from this past year and in the remainder of the report you’ll find details about the diverse programming we provided during the year.
It's become an annual tradition to kick the year off with the Purdue Top Farmer Conference. The 2023 conference was held on January 6th in West Lafayette. Given the success we had with offering the conference online in 2021 and 2022, we decided to provide the conference in a hybrid format with the program conducted in-person at Purdue’s Beck Center and simultaneously offered via Zoom. Over 270 people registered for the conference with a near 50-50 split between in-person and online attendance. Providing the conference in-person and online made it possible to reach producers and agribusiness personnel in 25 states plus Canada and Argentina. Next up in late January and early February was the annual Association of Agricultural Production Executives (AAPEX) annual conference held in Savannah, Georgia. This was the seventh year that the Center collaborated with the AAPEX board of directors on the program attended by 165 AAPEX members from across the country. Just a few weeks later, the Center provided a Learning Center program focused on managing 2023’s financial and risk management challenges at the Commodity Classic held in Orlando, Florida.
The 2023 Purdue Farm Management Tour was held in Washington and Jackson Counties, Indiana in mid-July with just over 200 producers and agribusiness personnel attending the Tour and early evening Master Farmer reception held in Salem, Indiana. Thanks to the Hackman and Rowland families for their willingness to open up their farming operations to visitors and to share how their farms have successfully integrated the next generation of family members into their farming operation. Tour attendees also gained insights into specialty crop production and marketing, intensive cover crop usage and launching a new egg laying operation.
The way the Center delivers information continues to evolve with more information being delivered online. Since its launch in 2020, the Center has delivered 149 Purdue Commercial AgCast podcast episodes. The podcasts have proven popular with nearly 16k downloads during 2023. The Center’s monthly newsletter Commercial AGNews continues to be a great way to stay up-to-date regarding upcoming programming as well as what’s new on the Center’s website with nearly 11k subscribers. Social media is also an important way to get information out to users and the Center is active on both X/Twitter and Facebook with over 2.3k followers.
As the nation’s only monthly survey of commercial ag producers, the Purdue University-CME Group Ag Economy Barometer provides insights into producer sentiment while also providing opportunities to learn more about producers’ reactions to contemporaneous events affecting the agricultural sector. Each month during 2023 the Center published an Ag Economy Barometer report summarizing survey results, posted a short YouTube summary video and an in-depth podcast interpretation of the current month’s barometer survey, all accessible via the Center’s website and by free subscription. The barometer is widely reported in both the ag and business press and is the subject of a large number of media interviews each month.
Thank you for your interest in and support of the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture. As always, if you have suggestions for future programs or research, or you just want to chat, we’d love to hear from you.
Download the full 2023 Annual Report (includes Center Programs and Publications, Highlights, Council Members, and more).