Cattle Risk Management Workshops to Be Held Across Iowa

Series of 11 sessions will give producers hands-on experience.

With high corn prices and fluctuating cattle prices, today's cattle producers face some tough challenges. To help producers work through risk management issues, Iowa State University's Department of Ag Economics and the Iowa Beef Center have teamed up with Kansas State University to present a series of 11 workshops that focus on risk management.

The "Iowa Cattle Risk Management Workshops," also are being sponsored by the Iowa Cattlemen's Association, Iowa Farm Bureau and USDA's Risk Management Agency. The workshops will take place throughout Iowa from January to March 2008. They are targeted toward cattle producers, ag lenders and other cattle industry stakeholders.

Learn how to use insurance, contracts

"Participants will gain hands-on experience using Livestock Risk Protection insurance, Livestock Gross Margin insurance, forward cash contracts, futures contracts, and options on futures by making real-time decisions for a typical Iowa cattle operation," says John Lawrence, director of the Iowa Beef Center and Extension livestock economist at Iowa State. "Those who participate will come away with a better understanding of how various price risk management tools can be used to manage risk in their operations."
Each workshop will focus on either cow herds or feedlots. The cow herd workshop focuses on management and marketing decisions pertaining to calves and stockers. The feedlot workshop will allow participants to make marketing and management decisions pertaining to stockers and finished steers. At the end of each workshop, you'll have an improved understanding of how various price risk management tools can be used to manage risk in their operations.

Schedule for feedlot and cow herd topics

Here's the schedule. All workshops start at 10 a.m., with introductions at 9:45 a.m., unless otherwise noted. The focus of each workshop is in parenthesis.

* Jan. 21, 2008: Lewis; Armstrong Learning Center (feedlot)
* Jan. 22, 2008: Creston; Union County Extension Office, 105 W. Adams, Ste. A (cow herd)
* Jan. 23, 2008: Edgewood; Graffiti's, 303 N. Washington; 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (feedlot)
* Jan. 24, 2008: Osage; Osage VFW (feedlot)
* Jan. 28, 2008: Washington; Washington County Extension Office (cow herd)
* Jan. 29, 2008: Pella; Comfort Inn, 910 W. 16th, Highway 163, exit 40 (feedlot)
* Jan. 30, 2008: Maquoketa; Jackson County Courthouse Community Room (cow herd)
* Jan. 31, 2008: Mapleton, Mapleton Community Center (cow herd)
* March 3, 2008: Red Oak; Red Oak Technology Center at Red Oak High School (cow herd)
* March 4, 2008: Union; South Hardin Rec Center (cow herd)
* March 5, 2008: Decorah; T-Bocks, 206 W. Water St.; 4-9 p.m. (cow herd)

Pre-registration is required at least three business days before the event. Registration fees are $25 and are payable the day of the event. To register or to obtain more information about the workshops, contact the Iowa Beef Center at 515-294-BEEF, or visit

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