Tag Archives: michigan agriculture and food index

MAFI reflects confidence in Michigan food and agriculture industry

Leaders in Michigan’s food and agriculture industry are feeling positive about food and agriculture in Michigan. The results of the recent Michigan Agriculture and Food Index (MAFI) reflect their optimistic outlook. In addition, their confidence in our state’s economy overall is climbing.

Twice a year since April 2013, staff members at the Michigan State University Product Center Food-Ag-Bio have sent questionnaires to leaders chosen to give their opinions about the current business climate in the food and agriculture industry. These leaders, members of the Food and Agriculture Roundtable, are made up of farmers, food processors and people who run agribusinesses.

The results of the surveys are used to create the MAFI. A score of 100 is considered neutral on the index’s rating system. Ratings above 100 are considered positive and ratings below 100 are considered negative. Since the index’s inception in 2013, the ratings have never been negative. In addition, ratings on the state of Michigan’s overall economy have grown from 115 in April 2013 to 120 in January 2014 to 133 in April 2014. More than 70 percent of those surveyed are positive about Michigan’s economy.

The index also showed respondents ratings of the state of the food and agriculture system, which showed a steady confidence on all three surveys with indexes of 147, 146 and 145 for each survey, respectively. In addition, respondents generally believe that sales will increase, and the investment index increased 8.4 percent from January to April. The employment index remains unchanged from January.

The index helps Michigan State University Extension educators and specialists to better understand the needs of the industry and determine how our efforts influence conditions.

Check out this article and video from WILX, which features Gov. Rick Snyder; Dr. Chris Peterson, director of the Product Center; and Betsy Braid, Agriculture and Natural Resources Communications educational program coordinator: http://www.wilx.com/home/headlines/State-Agriculture-Business-Booming-268187132.html

Read more on the MAFI in the executive summary: http://expeng.anr.msu.edu/uploads/files/42/MI%20Food%20and%20Ag%20Roundtable%20results%207-18.pdf

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Governor praises and challenges Michigan agriculture at Ag Expo

On Tuesday at the Ag Expo VIP Breakfast, I had at the privilege of sharing the podium with Gov. Rick Snyder and Michigan State University President Lou Anna K. Simon as well as Dr. Chris Peterson, director of the MSU Product Center Food-Ag-Bio.

Gov. Snyder praised agriculture as a steadying force but challenged leaders of agriculture to keep it growing into the future. His top priority is working to develop and keep a growing skilled work force in agriculture and other trades. He also highlighted the food safety innovation done here at MSU.

Read more about what the governor said in this news release from Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Communications: http://anrcom.msu.edu/anrcom/news/item/gov._snyder_challenges_mich._ag_leaders_to_take_leadership_role_in_world_fo

Dr. Peterson announced the results from the latest Michigan Agriculture and Food Index (MAFI), which show that leaders in the food and agriculture industry remain optimistic about their businesses and Michigan’s economy.

Read more about the MAFI results in this ANR Communications release: http://anrcom.msu.edu/anrcom/news/item/michigan_state_university_food_and_ag_leaders_hopeful_about_industry_state

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Michigan farmers and processors optimistic about agriculture’s future

The second Michigan Agriculture and Food Index was released March 4 during Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Week. The index was based on a survey taken in December 2013. It reflects a shared optimism by farmers and food processors about the future of the food and agriculture industries in Michigan. Read a summary in this ANR Communications news release:

http://anrcom.msu.edu/anrcom/news/item/msu_food_and_ag_leaders_remain_confident_about_the_future_cautious_about_in.

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Governor and new index show confidence in agriculture

At the annual Ag Expo breakfast July 16, Gov. Rick Snyder expressed his confidence in Michigan’s agriculture industry. The first Michigan Agriculture and Food Index (MAFI) was released at the Expo. The index shows that food and agriculture leaders share that confidence. Results from the index came from an MSU Product Center Food-Ag-Bio survey of 100 members of the Food and Agriculture Roundtable. The roundtable consists of farmers, leaders of agribusiness firms and food processors.

The roundtable and the index are just two elements in our efforts to be more responsive to the needs of our stakeholders and more accountable to decision makers in the way we respond. The Food and Agriculture Roundtable members will be polled twice annually to gauge their perceptions of the business climate for food and agriculture in Michigan. Although we are not suggesting that Michigan State University gets credit for when the index is up or should be blamed when the index is down, we ARE suggesting that the index should help us focus on the issues that might be the cause of a decline in the index and track how our efforts might influence those conditions.

Over the past 8 years, we’ve relied on one figure more than any other to characterize the strength of the food and agriculture industries in the state: the Product Center’s estimate of the total economic impact of the food and agriculture sector. In 2006, the Product Center estimated the total economic impact of the sector at $60.1 billion. In 2009, that impact had grown to $71.3 billion and by 2012, the estimate was up to $91.4 billion. That information will continue to be important – and the fact that this measure has been increasing reflects some of the same patterns that are reflected in the positive outlook this new index has documented. MSU Extension is one of the key funding sources for the work of the Product Center, along with MSU AgBioResearch, and the research coming from the Product Center helps us to better understand the needs of an important industry that we serve.

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