ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU) -- The January Prices Paid to Farmers Report is out and the numbers aren't much to get excited about. The January all milk price in the state was $16.30 a hundred-down $3 from a year ago and $1.50 less than in December. But it was 20 cents more than the national all milk price as all 23 of the top milk producing states saw lower pay prices in January. Idaho had the biggest price drop of $1.60 a hundred while the drop in Kansas was 50 cents. Michigan continues to have the lowest pay prices with their January price at just $14.90. The highest milk price was in Texas where farmers there got $17.70 a hundred in January.
Prices for other commodities aren't too hot either. In January, Wisconsin corn growers got $3.16 a bushel for their crop-up 3 cents from December but down 11 cents from last January. Soybeans prices were down to $9.21 a bushel in January-22 cents less than December and 34 cents less than a year ago. But oat prices, at $3.13 a bushel were up over 50 cents a bushel from both a year ago and this past December. Hay prices were also up. Alfalfa hay sold for an average of $130 a ton in January-up $3 from December and $45 more than a year ago.
There will be another meeting today at the White House concerning the Renewable Fuels Standards. President Trump wants to hear from the renewable fuels industry on possible adjustments to the pricing structure in the industry. But industry leaders are feeling better about the situation after Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue told the crowd at Commodity Classic this week that he and the President "unequivocally" support ethanol. Perdue told the crowd of farmers he has not nor will he support any policies in this country that diminish the demand for renewable fuels and is harmful to farmers. He also added that the President is "strong for farmers."
Farm groups continue to spread the message that the North American Free Trade Agreement is good for farmers and the entire country. As the current round of renegotiation talks continue in Mexico, the dairy industry is pointing out that the deal is the driving force in our exports of over $1.2 billion in dairy products to Mexico. They are the biggest buyer of our dairy products taking one fourth of our foreign sales. And when spread out over the 5 year period from 2012 through 2016, the total economic impact of those dairy sales to Mexico amounts to well over $23 billion.
A long time leader and member of the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board has been appointed to serve as vice-chair of the 37 member USDA National Dairy Promotion and Research Board. Connie Seefeldt of Coleman in northeast Wisconsin will serve a one year term in that position. Seefeldt is a long time member of WMMB and served 5 years as Board chair.
And if you visit the Smithsonian Museum in Washington on your next visit, you will that 2018 is being designated as the Year of the Tractor. The museum has also added a "Precision Farming" exhibit to the already existing "American Enterprise" display to track the modernization of American agriculture. And to show off how far tractor technology has come, the Smithsonian now has on display a green, yellow and red Waterloo Boy tractor, marking Deere and company's 100th anniversary of getting into the tractor business.