By JULIE JARGON
ALBION, Neb. — The U.S. economy may be teetering on the brink of recession. But there’s a bountiful harvest down on the farm.
Grain prices are surging to historic levels. Spring wheat, a variety often used in bread, hit a record $18.53 per bushel yesterday. Corn is trading above $5 and soybeans are bringing in more than $13, all 25% or more above their year-ago prices.
Net farm income is expected to hit $92.3 billion in 2008 — a 51% increase over the 10-year average of $61.1 billion. Across much of the Great Plains, unemployment rates are well below national figures and housing markets remain robust. Robert Moskow, a food industry analyst at Credit Suisse, has proclaimed this the “golden age” of agriculture.