Virginia agencies to host FARM 101 workshop series for dairy producers

BLACKSBURG, Va., Oct. 5, 2009 – Virginia Cooperative Extension, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service invite Virginia dairy farmers to attend a series of free seminars on managing risk in the dairy business. Workshops will take place from 10 a.m. to noon on six consecutive Thursdays, Oct. 15 to Nov. 19.

The six futures, assumptions, risks, and marketing (FARM) 101 workshops will address futures and options contracts, trading on the Chicago Board of Exchange, forward pricing, margin protection, and other strategies to help producers stay profitable.

"The global economic recession has caused a difficult time for many dairy farmers in Virginia and elsewhere," said Mike Roberts, agriculture and natural resources Extension agent and unit coordinator in Prince George County, Va. "These workshops will offer producers information to help them deal with the current financial climate so that they are ready when the economy rebounds."

The sessions, which will be held via teleconference, will take place at six sites in Virginia, one in North Carolina, and one in Pennsylvania:

Each location will have an on-site coordinator to ensure a good learning environment. Producers may choose which sessions to attend but are encouraged to attend them all.

Presenters will be located in Illinois, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin, as well as Paris, France:

Registration is required to get an accurate count for handouts and lunches. Farmers unable to attend FARM 101 in person may view live streaming video of each session.

For more information and a schedule of the speakers, visit the VDACS website or contact Mike Roberts at (804) 720-1993. You may register online or by phone at (804) 733-2686.