Touch the Soil News #1173 (Feature photo – American Farmland – Public Domain)
The USDA tracks the value of American cropland – that is land used for crops, not livestock pasture. In their latest report of August 2018, the average value of an acre of cropland grew from $1,750 in 2004 to $4,130 in 2018. This equates to an average increase of 5 percent a year. All of this, as land is sold and traded, adds to the increase of the cost of food. Has the value of our purchasing power (income) gone up by 5 percent a year? Said in another way, have our incomes (since 2004) gone up the same 236 percent as the value of farmland?