Research Bulletin (Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station)


How scarce resources, especially capital, should be allocated among different crop and livestock enterprises to maximize returns is an ever present problem for all Iowa farmers. It is a problem of particular importance to beginning farmers in southwest Iowa. They not only have limited funds with which to become established in farming but also have been faced with drouth and declining prices in recent years.

Because of the magnitude of planning problems for young farmers, the Iowa Agricultural Extension Service initiated an educational program designed particularly to provide technical assistance and guidance in planning for this group. This research study had been designed to aid in these purposes and relates to problems of beginning farmers in southwest Iowa. Not only is guidance needed on the best organization of resources within the farm, but also an appraisal of income opportunities open to young farmers in farming and in nonfarm employment is needed to facilitate choice and adjustment. Information concerning optimum farm plans is needed to help farmers who wish to and should remain in agriculture to obtain greater profits. Information comparing farm and off-farm income is needed to facilitate choice by young farmers who may feel that income and welfare of their families might be increased by shifting to another occupation.



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