Farm Progress

Farm financial management is focus of 17 meetings to be held across Iowa in January.

Rod Swoboda 1, Editor, Wallaces Farmer

January 1, 2018

3 Min Read
LOW PRICES, TIGHT MARGINS: Making the most of the year ahead is the theme of 17 upcoming GrowingOn meetings in Iowa.

Farm Credit Services of America hosts its GrowingOn meetings each year as part of the farm lender’s commitment to be a dependable and reliable partner during all agricultural financial cycles: the downtimes as well as the uptimes. In January, 17 meetings will be held in Iowa Jan. 3-23. Ag lending representatives and farm management specialists will take a new look at factors affecting profitability for producers, as well as strategies and tools farmers can use to improve their farming operations.

Outlook for agriculture
While prices for crops aren’t expected to improve markedly in the foreseeable future, several key economic conditions remain positive for agriculture in the year ahead. Those factors include interest rates that are still at historically low levels, relatively stable land values and a strong demand for protein which helps support soybean prices and livestock prices. Leaders of FCSAmerica will discuss what these economic factors mean for crop farmers and livestock producers and the resulting opportunities that exist in 2018 and beyond.

Steve Johnson, farm management specialist with Iowa State University Extension, returns to GrowingOn this year, presenting his observations and recommendations for coping with agriculture’s challenges. Johnson will focus on farm management practices that work for both those farmers who are facing financial challenges and for those looking to grow their operations. A case study of an FCSAmerica customer who has expanded his farming operation in the current economic cycle will highlight proven pricing strategies and financial and risk management practices. 

What you can do to manage risk
“Our case example farmer employs several key steps to effectively manage financial risk that I’ll discuss and explain at the GrowingOn meetings,” Johnson says. “Our example farmer understands his costs, actively merchandises his grain and is always aware of where his financials are headed. As a result, this farmer is in a position to take advantage of opportunities when they come up.”

Preregister today
Preregistration is required if you plan to attend a GrowingOn meeting in your area. Details are at, or by calling any local FCSAmerica office, or by calling 800-884-FARM.

FCSAmerica is proud to finance the growth of rural America, including special needs of young and beginning farmers. With $27.1 billion in assets and $5.1 billion in members’ equity, FCSAmerica is one of the region’s leading providers of credit and insurance services to farmers, ranchers, agribusiness and rural residents in Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. Learn more at

2018 meeting dates and locations

• Waucoma — Jan. 3 at Waucoma Event Center, 308 Riverview Drive

• Manchester — Jan. 3 at Delaware County Fairgrounds Pavilion, East Acers St.

• Davenport — Jan. 4 at Golden Leaf Banquet & Convention Center, 2902 E. Kimberly Road

• Newton — Jan. 5 at Des Moines Area Community College, 600 N. 2nd Ave. W

• Ottumwa — Jan. 8 at Faith Christian Outreach Church, 1302 East Washington St. 

• Mount Pleasant — Jan. 9 at Embassy Suites, 1040 P St.

• Cedar Falls — Jan. 10 at Hilton Garden Inn, 7213 Nordic Drive

• Cedar Rapids — Jan. 11 at the Hotel at Kirkwood, 7725 Kirkwood Blvd. SW

• Marshalltown — Jan. 11 at Iowa Valley Continuing Education Center, 3702 S. Center St.

• Perry — Jan. 12 at McCreary Community Building, 1800 Pattee St.

• Carroll — Jan. 16 at Carrollton Inn, 1730 U.S. Highway 71 North

• Storm Lake — Jan. 17 at Buena Vista University, Siebens Forum, 610 W. 4th St.

• Emmetsburg — Jan. 18 at the Shores at Five Island, 14 N. Lawler St.

• Clear Lake — Jan. 19 at Surf Ballroom & Museum, 460 N. Shore Drive

• Webster City — Jan. 22 at St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, 1000 Des Moines St.

• Oakland — Jan. 23 at Oakland Community Center, 614 Dr. Van Zee Road

• Lenox — Jan. 23 at Lenox Community Center, 210 E. Dallas St.




About the Author(s)

Rod Swoboda 1

Editor, Wallaces Farmer

Rod, who has been a member of the editorial staff of Wallaces Farmer magazine since 1976, was appointed editor of the magazine in April 2003. He is widely recognized around the state, especially for his articles on crop production and soil conservation topics, and has won several writing awards, in addition to honors from farm, commodity and conservation organizations.

"As only the tenth person to hold the position of Wallaces Farmer editor in the past 100 years, I take seriously my responsibility to provide readers with timely articles useful to them in their farming operations," Rod says.

Raised on a farm that is still owned and operated by his family, Rod enjoys writing and interviewing farmers and others involved in agriculture, as well as planning and editing the magazine. You can also find Rod at other Farm Progress Company activities where he has responsibilities associated with the magazine, including hosting the Farm Progress Show, Farm Progress Hay Expo and the Iowa Master Farmer program.

A University of Illinois grad with a Bachelors of Science degree in agriculture (ag journalism major), Rod joined Wallaces Farmer after working several years in Washington D.C. as a writer for Farm Business Incorporated.

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