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Despite Down Year, Midwest Farmers To Stick With What They Know

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2015 was a down year for most farmers in the Corn Belt, according to Agriculture Department numbers. But as Harvest Public Media’s Amy Mayer reports, even with their lowest income since 2002, most farmers will stick to what they know.

Demand for grain was high this fall, but corn and soybean supplies were abundant. Still, even low prices may not push farmers away from these staple crops. Iowa State University economist Chad Hart says always the priority is profitability. A few farmers may put more land aside for conservation or switch to organic.

"In most cases, though, what they find is the traditional cropping systems are the ones that offer that, that's the reason we did them in the past, that's the reason we're likely continue them in the future," he says.

Hart says most will weather this dip as just part of the cycle of agriculture. So expect to see plenty of corn fields next summer.