An educational forum focusing on issues vital to both new and experienced crop and livestock farmers will be held Friday, Aug. 25, at Western Iowa Tech Community College in Cherokee in northwest Iowa.
"Farming Matters: A Forum for Crop and Livestock Farmers," sponsored by the
Coalition to Support Iowa's Farmers (CSIF), will provide families with information needed to grow their livestock enterprises responsibly and successfully. The event is a follow-up to a similar one-day seminar held earlier this year in eastern Iowa attended by nearly 150 farmers.
A combination of general and concurrent sessions will offer insight on effectively using animal nutrients in crop production, meeting and exceeding regulations and enhancing neighbor relations and environmental stewardship efforts.
CSIF helps farmers grow responsibly
Mark Imerman, staff economist for Iowa State University's Department of Economics, will open the conference by highlighting the importance of agriculture to local and state economies and incentives that make livestock farming an attractive business opportunity. A farmer panel chaired by public relations expert Carol Bodensteiner will offer insight into ways farmers can enhance relationships with neighbors while making successful changes to their enterprises.
The forum will also provide farmers interested in diversifying their enterprises with a step-by-step guide for getting started raising livestock. A session titled "So you want to build a livestock barn?" will be facilitated by CSIF organization director Rex Hoppes and Eldon McAfee, legal counsel representing the Iowa Pork Producers Association. ISU Extension Economist John Lawrence of the Iowa Beef Center and Evan Vermeer of the Iowa Cattlemen's Association will visit with farmers about the economics of beef production and ways cattle farmers can successfully manage and grow feedlots.
CSIF has helped over 500 farm families
CSIF was launched in 2004 by the Iowa Cattlemen's Association, Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Farm Bureau, Iowa Pork Producers Association, Iowa Poultry Association and Iowa Soybean Association (ISA). The organization has helped nearly 500 farm families grow their livestock enterprises responsibly by meeting and exceeding regulations, identifying good locations for new livestock farms and protecting environmental quality.
"The forum includes something for everyone and is a continuation of our work to provide farmers with timely information so they can make sound decisions that enhance their farms and Iowa's economy," says CSIF president and ISA CEO Kirk Leeds. "This event is a valuable opportunity for people who are planning to add more livestock to their farms or for those thinking about the possibilities."
Early-bird registration for "Farming Matters" is only $25 by Aug. 11; $45 after Aug. 11. All early-bird registrants will receive a complimentary CSIF cap the day of the event. For more information, contact CSIF at (800) 932-2436 or log on to