Farming might be an ancient profession, but selling farm products in the modern world is not.
In order to help famers succeed in today’s economy, WSU Snohomish County Extension will offer a course called Cultivating Success: Agricultural Entrepreneurship and Farm Business Planning, beginning next week.
The goal of the course is to help new and experienced farmers learn more about business planning and direct marketing.
During the course, speakers will include bankers, business professionals and successful farmers. There will be an emphasis on financial and legal issues associated with farming.
Participants will be guided through the process of creating a business plan that can help them get loans for new enterprises or expansion of existing farms.
The course will be lead by Holly Thompson, an angus beef rancher from Stanwood who holds a degree from WSU in animal science and agriculture economics. She also has worked for Northwest Farm Credit as a loan officer, and is well-versed in farm economics and current market trends.
The course runs from 6-9 p.m. on Tuesday nights from Jan. 15-April 9 at WSU Snohomish County Extension’s Cougar Auditorium in McCollum Park, 600 128th St. S.E. in Everett. The cost of the course is $275, and preregistration is required.
To register, visit www.brownpapertickets.org/event/250334 to use your credit card, or download the form at snohomish.wsu.edu/ag/workshops/CultivatingSuccess20122013.pdf and mail it with your check. For help with registration contact Karie Christensen at (425) 357-6039, or email christensen4@.wsu.edu.
For more information on the course, contact Andrew Corbin, (425) 357-6012, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the entire Cultivating Success program, visit www.cultivatingsuccess.org.
Health-conscious eaters are driving up the demand for lamb, due to its low fat content and high density of minerals and vitamins.
Lamb can be a good alternative for farmers seeking to raise smaller livestock.
There are, however, skills unique to raising lambs and succeeding in the sheep industry.
The one-day WSU Extension Lamb 200 class is designed to help beginners get started, as well as to increase the knowledge base of more experienced farmers.
The goal of the class, said course developer Jan Busboom, is “to raise the level of awareness in lamb production from ‘farm to table,’ including reasons why lamb sometimes misses the mark for profitability and meeting consumer expectations.”
Topics include live animal evaluation; grid pricing; carcass grading and fabrication; added-value products; quality targets of consumers and chefs; palatability and quality evaluation and the use of new technologies and research to address critical and emerging issues.
Among the presenters will be WSU Extension meat and livestock specialists, local harvesting expert Pat Cairus from Del Fox Custom Meats, and Chef Jamie Callison to share his knowledge on the pairing of lamb, wines, and beer.
The class includes a lunch and a catered dinner, and will conclude with a panel presentation on marketing opportunities and challenges.
The class takes place all day Friday, Jan. 25 at the Stanwood-Camano Fairgrounds, 6431 Pioneer Hwy. in Stanwood. In addition, participants are encouraged to attend five additional sessions on sheep and lamb during the Country Living Expo on Saturday, Jan 26 at Stanwood High School.
Registration is $85 per person, which includes seminar, handouts, lunch, dinner and wine/lamb tasting. Paid registration must be made prior to January 14. A late fee of $25 will be charged after January 14, 2013.
To register online with a credit card, visit www.BrownPaperTickets.com/event/309250/ or download the form at www.animalag.wsu.edu and mail with your check.
For registration information or additional information on the 2013 Lamb 200 course, contact Sarah M. Smith, Grant/Adams Extension at (509) 754-2011, Ext. 413 or email email@example.com.