I am guessing we would all agree that March is coming in like a lion, but I sure hope it goes out like a lamb and continues a favorable pattern right through planting season.
I know it is like a broken record, but remember, winter is not over, and this year has been very tough on our livestock so be sure to keep an eye on condition, keep them well fed and continue making sure they have a comfortable place to get out of the weather as needed.
My silver lining for the week is the fact that parts of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan have received over 300 inches of snow this winter. Holy snowball folks, that is a lot of snow – yuck!
Do you want to do a better job of pricing your corn and soybeans? Is grain marketing a confusing and daunting task?
Or, do you just want to sharpen your marketing skills? If so, there will be some opportunity to do so in the very near future.
To start with, Ohio State University Extension is offering a two-session webinar focused on helping farmers become better grain marketers. Participants will have a better understanding of risk, marketing tools, and the development of written marketing plans.
Participants will learn to identify their personal risk tolerance and their farm’s financial risk capacity. Both of these are important in developing a successful grain marketing plan. Participants will also learn how crop insurance products effect marketing decisions and effect risk capacity.
Grain marketing consists of understanding and managing many pieces of information. Information on the different grain marketing contracts will be presented. These include basis, hedging, cash, futures, and option contracts.
Additionally, participants will be provided an example of a grain marketing plan and the fundamental principles that should be included.
The courses will be offered on two consecutive Tuesdays, on March 12 and March 19, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Cost for the two-day program is $30, includes a marketing notebook of resources along with lunch for both days.
Knowing we can’t get all our marketing skills sharpened in just a couple of hours, I want to springboard this effort into an ongoing opportunity beyond March 19 to take a more in-depth look at opportunities that can help strengthen your marketing skills.
Because of that, there will be discussion to go along with these two webinars in hopes to explore what we can do to increase marketing knowledge, skills and confidence amongst those participating in this program. Reservations are needed by Thursday, March 7, so call my office at 937-382-0901 to reserve your spot.
There is also questions concerning the Farm Bill and the impacts it may have on individual farms and producers. Tuesday, March 12, from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. will be the Southwest Ohio Corn Growers annual meeting at the Fine Arts Building on the Fayette County Fairgrounds.
Ben Brown, Program Manager for Farm management at Ohio State University, will be the keynote speaker. Ben will discuss not only the Farm Bill and the options and impacts it may create but also discuss the Farm Outlook for the rest of the year.
There will also be updates from the Ohio and National Corn Growers Associations and a short business meeting at the end. Get some really good information as well as a great lunch. This program is free, is open to anyone and is sponsored by the Southwest Ohio Corn Growers.
Reservations are needed so please call 740-335-1150 to reserve your place before March 5.
Tony Nye is the state coordinator for the Ohio State University Extension Small Farm Program and has been an OSU Extension Educator for agriculture and natural resources for over 30 years, currently serving Clinton County and the Miami Valley EERA.