| ||At this year’s AgChoices attendees will be able to choose four interactive presentations from the 15 available Growing Forward presentations, each designed to help move farm businesses forward. Each of the interactive sessions will highlight various projects, information, tools and services offered by Growing Forward Business Management through Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development and agriculture partners.
The Ag-Info Market topics and speakers include:
- Getting Structured… – Joel Bokenfohr, farm financial specialist, and Abby Verstraete, farm business intern, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – discover the advantages and disadvantages of various farm business structures for your farm. These structures will be examined in terms of start-up or succession and the impact on your bottom line.
- Open Wheat and Barley Markets. You’re good! Do you want to be even better? – Rick Dehod, grain farm specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – knowing your grade and protein provides opportunity for additional markets, profits, and enhanced cash flow. The challenge is knowing when to pull the trigger to seize those opportunities. Open Wheat and Barley Markets are the new reality, and Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development wants to help farmers make the best marketing decisions in an open market by providing information, tools and knowledge to enhance their crop marketing, finance and management skills.
- The Ins and Outs of Alberta’s New Environmental Markets – Paul Jungnitsch, carbon offset agrologist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – the offset system is a direct result of environmental concerns influencing markets for agricultural goods, and the influence of various environmental issues will no doubt keep growing in the future, this session is nicely tied in to the subject of youth and the business of agriculture.
- Quit Gambling – How Cattle Price Insurance can help Manage your Bottom Line – Brenda Campbell, livestock price insurance field analyst, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (AFSC) – learn how the Cattle Price Insurance Program can be used to secure a minimum price on your cattle – without limiting the upside.
- Maximizing Cereal Crop Returns for Young Farmers – Bill Chapman, crop business development specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – how to evaluate and solve some of the costly crop input decisions on agronomic problems and where to learn more.
- Market Local Initiative – Engaging New Entrants into the Local Food Market – Carmen Andrew, Explore Local Initiative, and Sharon Faye, market analyst, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – from farm incubator research to targeted extension programming, learn about the different ways the Explore Local Initiative are engaging new entrants in the local food market.
- Venture Out – For the Entrepreneur in You – Cameron Horner, 4-H Specialist, and Jalisa Barnett, 4-H specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – do you think beef is the only 4-H project that can make money? Venture Out is an online entrepreneurial resource that supports leaders in fostering entrepreneurial skills in members and assisting members in applying these concepts towards their projects.
- Wood Biomass Energy Opportunity for Farm and Rural Business – Toso Bozic, Woodlot Extension Specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – farm, communities and businesses in rural Alberta spend millions each year to heat buildings. Providing heat using a hot water system that burns readily available waste wood and agricultural biomass instead of fossil fuels has the potential to pay for itself quickly in energy savings, drastically reduce heating costs, and keep energy costs predictable.
- The Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency – Tricia Meaud – program specialist, Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency (ALMA) – learn about the leadership development projects that the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency is funding and how they are engaging youth in the business of agriculture and contributing to a stronger livestock industry. Also hear about new trends and the focus for the upcoming year.
- Real Time Animal Movement – Brad Smith, livestock technology specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – this project developed business management tools that will improve livestock producer’s ability to better managing their livestock by using Real Time Animal Movement technology. Active high frequency RFID tags, GPS, radio communication, Triangulation, and Google maps technologies were used to track animal movement in real time. Livestock producers can use these tools to improve their production efficiencies by identify when their livestock exit the perimeter of fields or display abnormal behaviour because of sickness, predation, rustling, or lack of feed and/or water.
- Opportunities are knocking for young farmers: Changing consumer, consumer behavior and market environment… – Jeewani Fernando, provincial consumer market analyst, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – learn what opportunities and challenges are out there for young farmers. Information provided in this session would help them to identify business opportunities, capture value added product development prospects, and develop more effective marketing strategies and to respond to changing consumer needs proactively.
- Business Risk Management - Update of Program Changes – Jane Mercier, business risk management field analyst, Agriculture Financial Services Corporation (AFSC) – Growing Forward 2 is bringing changes to existing Risk Management Programs for Canadian Producers. Come to this session to learn what these changes are, and how it will impact your farm’s risk management.
- Tools Available to Manage Agriculture Input Risks – Jennifer Stoby, market analyst agriculture inputs, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – does shopping for fertilizer, fuel, pesticides and seed stress you out? With so many decisions to make do you feel that there is limited pricing and marketing information available? We will explore the inputs markets by addressing tools available to track prices, why prices do what they do and how you can reduce the risk of paying too much.
- A Food Tracking Program that Really FITS – Margurite Thiessen, value chain development, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – is your inventory causing you a FIT? Meet FITS… the Food Inventory, Tracking and Sales System, a great tool for farm director operators and small to medium sized processors. FITS will simplify your inventory, tracking and sales. Stop by this presentation to see a demonstration of this new, easy to use, web-based technology. Because it FITS – this technology “fits” many situations and is capable of expanding to suit new and unknown applications.
- Getting the Cattle Performance You Desire While Minimizing Your Costs - Pat Ramsey, business development - beef competitiveness, and Barry Yaremico, beef and forage specialist, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development – Cowbytes is an easy-to-use cattle ration balancing program that allows producers to balance all the major nutrients and most of the micro-nutrients. The program calculates the nutrient content of the ration based on the inclusion rate of each feed. Cowbytes is also a decision making tool, combining ration information with management and economics. It helps producers optimize the use of home-grown feeds while only purchasing supplements that they really need. By investigating various combinations of feeds producers can get the cattle performance they desire while minimizing the cost of production.
AgChoices 2013 is being held in Camrose on February 12, 2013. For further information, a full agenda and event registration, visit the event website, or contact Leona Reynolds-Zayak at 780-853-8103.