March 22, 2020

If you ask most people where their food comes from, they’ll list off a few preferred grocery stores and maybe a specialist like a butcher shop. In Missouri, where farms make up two-thirds of the total land acreage, we know better. 

Small Missouri farms have a big impact on the local economy. Almost all the state’s farms (nearly 100,000 of them) are family-owned, with an average plot size of 269 acres. Viewed as a whole, these farms contribute a combined $88.4 billion to the state’s economy — and the entire agriculture industry supports over 370,000 jobs. 

Missouri agriculture is essential to every resident of the state. Farms put food on the table and money in bank accounts. Agriculture has a rich history here and will continue to be a critical component of what makes the Show-Me state so great. From generational farm families to new farm endeavors, the Missouri agriculture industry couldn’t exist without agriculture lending

As a financial institution, we understand how financing is necessary to get your operation up and running, cover the upfront costs of new equipment, or acquire more land. Agriculture lending gives farms the flexibility they need to continue being the backbone of this state.

Here at The Callaway Bank, we appreciate every farmer, rancher, and agribusiness person. They do a tremendous job that, frankly, many people take for granted. We encourage you to take a moment to thank a farmer for his or her hard work, not just today, but year-round!

Agriculture Goes Beyond Crops and Cattle

Thanks to the state’s rich diversity of terrain, farmers in Missouri grow a wide variety of crops. Soybeans are Missouri’s biggest commodity, and the 5 million acres of soybeans sell for about $2.2 billion annually. The 3 million acres of corn take second place when it comes to generating revenue, and there are more than 2 million cows throughout the state. But the state’s agriculture production extends beyond the traditional ideas of just crops and cattle. Farmland is used in a variety of ways to generate business and tourism for the state.

There are also more than 130 wineries in the state, operating on 1,700 acres of grapes. In addition to unique and robust wines, these farms create hotbeds of tourism. Where a winery appears, tourist attractions such as restaurants, bed-and-breakfast establishments, and local craft shops are sure to follow. 

Another unique facet of the Missouri agricultural industry is beekeeping. Local example “beeing” Giofre Apiaries, a mid-Missouri company that makes commercial ice cream with honey the owners farm themselves. Nancy and Domenic Giofre started beekeeping in 2009 with two small hives. A decade later, they continue to add hives to produce more honey for their ice cream. They now have 25 different flavors, ranging from standards such as vanilla and chocolate to new varieties like elderberry, cherry blossom, and salted caramel. 

We could continue, but the point is that agriculture and farmers contribute to aspects of our lives and the economy that we don’t often consider. It’s important to remember where our food comes from and the people who work hard to provide it.

Financing Missouri Farms Through Agriculture Lending

From corn to cows to hens to honey, Missouri agriculture contributes to the economy in countless ways. The Callaway Bank is proud to offer financial tools that support the agricultural community — something that we’ve been doing for the past 163 years. Our Ag Lenders come from farming backgrounds and have extensive experience with the unique demands of agribusinesses because they’re farmers, too. 

We know what it’s like to be in your shoes. So we try to always meet your needs, communication preferences, and schedules. Want to meet on your farm before sunup? So do we. We’re happy to discuss our agriculture lending options, including loans for land, livestock, equipment, or crops. Need a flexible payment plan? We can help. Want to make one single payment per year? That’s an option. Missouri agriculture is important to us, and always will be. We want to prioritize your needs so we can help continue to make you successful, season after season. Our ag lending options are designed to help farms of any size and specialty.

With You For the Moments That Matter

At The Callaway Bank, we make client-focused decisions on a local scale, and our goal is to help you find the right loan solution to fit your unique situation. Whether you’re refinancing your farm or need a loan for an expansion, contact an Ag Lender at The Callaway Bank for all of your agricultural lending needs!
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#AgDay20, #NationalAgWeek, #ThankAFarmer