Melvin Brees
Farm Management Specialist
University of Missouri Extension




Decisive Marketing

Weekly Grain Analysis Report
Richard Rudel
University of Missouri Extension Economist

 Weekly Cattle Report

 Weekly Hog Report
Glenn Grimes
Ron Plain
University of Missouri Extension Economist

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Decisive Marketing

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Please send your comments and send suggestions to Melvin Brees, Farm Management Specialist, University of Missouri Extension, #1 Courthouse Square,  Fayette, MO 65248, call 660-248-2272, or send messages by e-mail to:
June 22, 2001

It’s Been Fun!

       “Decisive Marketing” began in the spring of 1988.  Why did I choose that name for a marketing newsletter?  For most of us, making the sales decisions is one of the most (if not the most) difficult management decisions we are faced with.  The purpose of the newsletter has been to provide market strategy and planning information that would help make these marketing decisions easier.  I decided (with a little help) that if the focus was market decision making, Decisive Marketing seemed like an appropriate title.

       Instead of doing market outlook, I’ve tried to focus on using outlook information for market strategy decision making.  Ron Plain, Glenn Grimes and Richard Rudel all provided excellent outlook information, which has been included regularly in the newsletter.  Other outlook information is readily available from FAPRI, USDA, other Land-Grant Universities, private market analysts and subscription newsletters.  Plenty of outlook information is available, but how do you use it?  Each farm is different in cash needs, risk bearing ability, break-even prices, etc. and I’ve tried to offer a variety of possible marketing alternatives for you to consider and decide what would be the best strategy for your own situation.

         In 1988 I started writing a paragraph or two on marketing strategies that might be appropriate, given the current outlook information available.  Within a year or so, these comments had grown to an entire page devoted primarily to marketing strategies.  Since the newsletter started; we’ve seen the ’88 drought, ’93 flood, high soybean prices with record high prices for corn and wheat, low grain prices that included 28 year lows for soybeans, changing basis patterns, cattle and hog price cycles that included single digit prices for hogs. We went from government programs with PIK & Roll, set-asides, deficiency payments, CRP and acreage bases to Freedom-to-Farm, more CRP, transition payments, market loss payments, oilseed payments and LDPs.  Through all of these changes, there’s never been a shortage of marketing challenges and it was often hard to stop at one page when the markets were active and a variety of strategies might be appropriate.  I hope the information has been useful.

         This will be the last issue of “Decisive Marketing”—at least for now.  Effective July 1, I have accepted a position as Extension Associate—Farm Business Management in the Department of Agriculture Economics, MO Value Added Development Center at the University of Missouri.  While I anticipate that marketing/risk management will still be a part of what I will do, I’m not sure what form the programming will take or whether it will include a regular newsletter.

        Your questions, comments and suggestion have always been important.  Many of the newsletter strategy discussions were a direct result of some of your questions or comments.  Please don’t stop sharing them with me.  You can still reach me by e-mail: or at 143 Mumford Hall on the Columbia campus.

            In spite of the ups and downs of the markets along with all of the associated marketing challenges, it’s been fun—most of the time, anyway! --Melvin


University of Missouri ExtensionDecisive Marketing - June 22, 2001 -- Revised: April 20, 2004