South Dakota Cattle Ranchers Lose Money In 2016

KIMBALL, S.D. (AP) – South Dakota ranchers who took part in a Mitchell Technical Institute program lost an average of $100 per cow last year, after earning an average profit of $150 per cow the year before.

The Daily Republic reports the institute has 100 farms enrolled in its farm and ranch management program.

Lori Tonak, an instructor at the institute, says the cattle market is still shaken by price drops in 2015. Of the 45 producers she works with in central South Dakota, the most profitable earned $12 per cow.

Tonak says farmers can cut costs by grazing cattle longer on cover crops instead of placing them in a feedlot.

Farmer Gary Hoing says it may take up to 10 years to make up the losses.

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