Oil Prices Play a Key Role for Montana’s Farmers


By Dillon Tabish, Flathead Beacon   

Farmers across Montana could reap the benefits of plummeting oil prices, marking a significant boon for the state’s largest industry, although continued volatility in the market could eventually have less-beneficial implications, according to agriculture analysts.

Alongside everyday consumers, farmers’ pocketbooks are poised to benefit greatly from cheaper fuel, at least in the short term. Energy costs can account for over one-third of farmers’ production costs, from tractor diesel to fertilizers and pesticides to transportation expenses.

“It’s really important whenever something like this occurs. I can think of no other input cost that’s as important as fuel in terms of making life better for these producers,” said George Haynes, an agriculture policy specialist at Montana State University. “You never want to underestimate the importance of oil prices decreasing.”

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Source:  Flathead Beacon

Posted by Jami Howell

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