Farm Management Minute: Take advantage of winter meetings

Farm Forum

This past week, I attended two informational meetings with the first one being the 2013 South Dakota Wheat Growers Association annual meeting in Aberdeen, SD and then the Northern States Beef Conference in Watertown, SD. Both meetings offered a great line-up of guest speakers and the opportunity to visit with fellow producers. In this day and age of instant access to volumes of information at your fingertips through the use of the internet, some producers may be tempted to skip the face-to-face meetings. I am going to suggest three reasons why you should invest the time to attend such events.

First of all, the field of production agriculture is growing more competitive every day. We, as producers, need to increase our awareness of topics which today range from local issues such as drainage/zoning proposals to international events which affect our grain and livestock markets. The quality of speakers and topics covered at both of the above meetings most definitely met these criteria.

The second benefit of attending meetings in person is the opportunity to interact with other like-minded individuals. Quite often, I have discovered a new technique, a great idea, and/or a different approach to the subject matter by just from visiting with others during the breaks or lunch times.

Lastly, I believe if a person takes the time and effort to attend a meeting, he/she will be more eager to learn something useful. Of course, the next step is to decide if and how this new information can be utilized on your farm.

The instructors for the SD Center of Farm/Ranch Management will be attending many commodity trade group meetings and agricultural seminars over the winter months. We are also actively recruiting new students. In case you do not get the chance to visit directly with one of us, I encourage you to call 1-800-684-1969 and learn more about the benefits of enrolling in our programs.