There may be no better use of the term “delicate balance” than when discussing the relationship between profit and conservation and the role each of them plays in the management of a typical Iowa farm. For our part, Iowa Land Sales and Farm Management believes that profit and conservation can – indeed, must – coexist in any successful farming operation that has an eye on the future.
Unfortunately, it has been our experience both personally and professionally, that too few farms are currently managing to strike that “delicate balance,” and instead are putting far too much weight on farm profit to the detriment of farm conservation.
It isn’t difficult to understand why this is happening when you consider the exponential growth in land values paired with historically high commodity prices that, together, are creating enormous wealth in the agricultural sector.
During such times, our vision can get blurry from the dollar signs in our eyes. The lure of substantial financial gain can tempt us to overlook or minimize the importance of conservation issues when making day-to-day decisions about the farm.
Of course, ignoring these issues during the good days only puts us in peril of having to face them head on during the bad days – those periods when land values and commodity prices aren’t soaring. And when that happens, we won’t have the luxury of looking past them or pretending that they just aren’t all that important.
Frankly, the “delicate balance” of profit and conservation is more important than ever in agriculture. Conservation needs to be at the forefront of every decision to ensure the proper techniques are being applied and implemented to keep farms in their very best condition. Keeping a conservation mindset allows us to maintain and improve our farmland, while still enjoying the good times, so that the land is strong enough to perform just as well or better when the financial high tide recedes.
Working with an expert farm manager that is dedicated to finding that “delicate balance” and passionate about “leaving the land better than we found it” is one of the most effective ways to ensure the sustainability of your farm.
The team at Iowa Land Sales and Farm Management has the experience that comes from personally owning Iowa farmland and stewarding it with a conservation mindset that’s meant to increase the profits earned from your farmland during good times and bad. Let us help you strike a balance on your farm so it will be healthy and profitable today and for future generations.