Kansas farmers are known for the resiliency.

Between tariffs, tweets, trade wars and unfavorable weather, the agricultural industry as a whole has faced plenty of hardships in recent years. Each week, we see stories about family farms foreclosing, increased need for mental health care in the ag industry due to stress and ever-shifting commodity markets.

Despite all of this, Kansas was able to show some growth in its exports in 2019.

The Topeka Capital-Journal’s Tim Carpenter reported Kansas exports of soybean, corn and sorghum paired with a surge in radio navigational equipment sales combined to increase the value of goods shipped out of the country to $11.6 billion in 2019.

The Kansas Department of Commerce said exports expanded 0.2% over 2018 levels.

This is wonderful news. These numbers prove the Kansas work ethic still means something. They prove that Kansas farmers have things to offer and that adaptability and versatility can pay off.

We hope our farmers take moment to celebrate. Even it’s a short moment.

“Seeing Kansas exports rise in the face of global headwinds like trade disputes, aviation difficulties and Brexit is heartening,” David Toland, the state commerce secretary told The Capital-Journal. “Kansans should be proud they are outperforming the national trend.”

Nationally, the United States experienced a 1.2% reduction in exports to $1.64 trillion.

The heartland, on the whole, received a somewhat mixed bag for their exports.

Carpenter reported that in Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma the average state export value last year was $9.3 billion. Percentage shift in exports among border states from 2018 to 2019: Oklahoma, up 0.2%; Colorado, down 2.7%; Nebraska, down 6.2%; Missouri, down 7.8%. Among our neighbors, Kansas clearly came out on top.

That’s a nice feeling on one end, but we feel for the struggling farmers across the country.

Kansas’ beef, wheat and aviation industries have long been the boon for the Kansas economy. Unfortunately this year, those markets aren’t as strong as they’ve been in the past and while they’re critical to our state’s success — and likely always will be — it’s nice to see other exports picking up the slack.

The biggest surprise might be the navigational equipment exports that reached $240 million, a 75% climb from $137 million in 2018. Kudos to those who helped bring on this change.

We are confident that Kansans will find a way to stay the course in 2020.