MWA: Murray Wise Associates

News & Insights

In the 2017 Fourth Quarter edition of The Wise Ag Update, we discussed California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) and the mandated development of groundwater sustainability plans (GSPs) for various parts of the state. The questions we proposed then were: How would the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act shape how farmers use water with crop allocations? [...]

This summer Iowa State University came out with its annual survey of Iowa farmland owners and reported that 82 percent of farmland in the state is debt-free. That was the highest percentage of debt-free land in the report’s history. In contrast, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in its most recent AgLetter reported that the [...]

MWA Welcomes Eric Sarff

MWA Auctions and Real Estate is pleased to announce that Eric Sarff has been hired to supervise marketing for brokerage and auctions sales and will contribute to the farm management and investment divisions as well.  Before joining MWA, he was the Midwest director of acquisitions and management at Farmland Partners Inc. and was a vice [...]

Last year when writing my commentary for this newsletter, it was hard to draw conclusions on the Midwestern agricultural land market due to the relatively small volume of transactions. While land prices generally declined, I noted that in the transactions that had occurred, high-quality land was maintaining its value better than lesser-quality land. That has [...]

MWA Welcomes Robert Cowan

MWA Investments is pleased to announce the addition of Robert Cowan to our team to help lead MWA’s Latin American operations; including the acquisition and management of agricultural properties throughout Latin America. Before joining MWA, Robert served as president at Farmland Partners; president & chief investment officer at American Farmland Company; director of agriculture and [...]

Fruit & vegetable producers have seen growth in the demand for individually quick-frozen (IQF) produce, with the newest addition to the marketplace being avocados. Some consumers may shy away from a frozen avocado while others embrace the convenience. It will be interesting to see if this innovation for preserving avocados (something that traditionally has not [...]

Strawberry Fields For Sale

By Barry A. Chatz and Kevin H. Morse Originally published in The Bankruptcy Strategist, Dec 2018 On Oct. 3, 2018, the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California (Los Angeles) confirmed the Chapter 11 Liquidating Plan of Eclipse Berry Farms, LLC and its affiliated companies. Confirmation of the plan concluded a two-year [...]

Certified organic acreage in the predominately grain-producing states of the Midwest has been on the rise in recent years. While still a minuscule percentage of overall grain production, organic crops have had a growing impact. This should come as no surprise, considering declines in commodity prices coupled with increasing demand for organic foods. Some producers [...]

Do Your Homework

It’s back-to-school season, and if there’s one lesson we can apply to farm and agribusiness transactions from the messages we tell our kids, it’s this: “Do your homework!” We’ve all heard horror stories of money pits – the acquisitions in which people overpaid and later discovered material issues. In many cases, those issues could have [...]

Author: Joe Bubon, President MWA I started working with Murray and investing in high-quality farmland in 1990. At that time, there were only three or four other firms providing opportunities to invest in farmland to a small number of pension funds and individual investors. Today, the number of firms offering those services has grown significantly. [...]