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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 17, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 6 THE LfcTHBRIDGE HERALD Tuwday, December 17, 1974 Kansas farmers cautious about crop WICHITA, Kan. (AP) The Kansas wind had coated Tony Leis with dust as he hustled the tractor up and down the 80-acre field sowing next year's winter wheat crop. "Well, I'll tell he said through dust-gritted teeth, "the fanner has got to take care of himself in this wheat deal. If we plant too much wheat, you know what's going to happen to the price we get for it." In short, Tony Leis isn't planting as much 1975 wheat as he can, although Agriculture Secretary Earl Butz has urged fencerow- to-fencerow planting. Nor FOR A HAPPY, FESTIVE HOLIDAY SEASON WRENTHAM Farm Supplies (1974) Ltd. MF m l Wrentham Phone 222-3777 is Leis leaving a lot of ground idle. "I'm planting about 600 acres in winter said Leis, who farms the flat prairies south of Wichita. "That's about what I planted last year." He smiles when asked about government exhor- tations for fencerow-to- fencerow cropping. The federal requirements that left idle thousands of acres to prevent over-production are gone. So are the huge government-owned grain surpluses that helped feed the Soviets two years ago. Watches market Tony Leis and other Kan- sas farmers understand that the wheat market is watching them as seeding begins for the crop that will harvested in July. For the first time in dec- ades, the farmer has a wedge to force wheat prices upward, say farm leaders like Tom Ostrander, president of the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers. Tony Leis is using the wedge all he can. All the wheat he harvested in July still is in storage, waiting for the market to meet his price. "I haven't sold any because the price isn't Leis said. "All of the costs we have to pay for a crop are away up Fertilizer, fuel, machinery repair bills, everything's gone up and wheat just ain't going to cover it all." Ostrander, another southcentral Kansas fanner with acres near Wellington, agrees. He said he has received "some mighty rough feed- back" from consumers who think farmers are ex- ploiting the wheat market for high profits. Made money "That just isn't Ostrander said. "Four dollars a bushel is the bare break-even point. This isn't a get rich quick proposi- tion for the farmer." After a decade of grow- ing wheat that never sold for more than a bushel, many farmers made money last year and now are fighting to maintain what Ostrander calls "the only clear money we've had in 15 years. The taste of prosperity, and higher wheat prices, are the best incentives for 1975 wheat production, he said. If plantings equal last May the gaiety and warmth of the season brighten the hearts and light the lives of our customers and friends. Thanks for your continued loyalty and patronage! BAALIM WHOLESALE LIMITED Lethbridge 205-1 Oth Street S. year, Kansas farmers will seed about 12 million acres in winter wheat, again setting the stage for a record crop that was hurt this year by bad weather and plant diseases. However, Leis and Ostrander say they aren't counting the bushels before they're harvested. Planting is only the beginn- ing of the 10-month wheat- cycle gamble that won't end until early next July. "There are a lot of things that can go wrong in this Ostrander said. "But that's one thing about being a farmer. There's al- ways something brewing." Americans are consum- ing vast amounts of prepared convenience foods with much of the kitchen work done by the processor The cost of this built in service has gone up far more than the cost of the basic food item itself 747 JUMBO SIGHTSEEING CRUISER WITH STEWARDESS Christmis Disneyltnd. Pistdena Rosa Bowl Tour. Las Vegas, Reno San Francisco, Hollywood. Universal Studios, Knotts Berry Farm Fisherman's Wharf. 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Alt.. Phoiw 327-3536 329-4474 Alto Plnctwr Crtttk Trawl ;