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The one winter meeting you can’t afford to miss

Mike Wilson, Senior Executive Editor

September 6, 2019

3 Min Read
Man smiling in conference room
Mike Wilson

If you’re looking for after-hours amusement, the Farm Futures Business Summit may not be your cup of tea. But if you’re looking for insightful, hard-hitting sessions that get down to business, set your browser to and join us for the 2020 winter meeting you don’t want to miss.

Now in its 14th year, the summit has built a reputation for high-level farmer learning and networking. The 2020 event, to be held Jan. 23-24 at the Coralville Marriott Hotel & Conference Center near Iowa City, follows the trend with a jam-packed agenda to help you navigate the increasingly complex world of farm business management.

Mugs of Farm Futures Business Summit speaker

Sessions will move from big picture to on-farm decision-making, starting with Kansas State ag economist and policy expert Barry Flinchbaugh. With his candid approach to policy, Flinchbaugh mixes his legendary wit with wisdom to offer a unique look at today’s political climate and how it impacts farmers. A speaker in high demand, Flinchbaugh chaired the committee that authored the 1996 farm bill.

Another speaker in high demand is Virginia Tech ag economist emeritus David Kohl, author of countless books on farm financial management, and a favorite among summit attendees. Kohl has traveled over 9 million miles throughout his career to conduct more than 6,500 workshops and seminars for agricultural groups. A Farm Futures columnist, Kohl will offer a 30,000-foot perspective on global trends impacting your business and profit margins.

Related:Skill development: Summit offers help in tough farm economy

Iowa farmer and marketing consultant Chris Barron will be on hand to offer tips on better farm financial decision-making. This topic was the number one request made by summit attendees at the 2019 event. Barron will also be on hand for a breakout session on margin management.

Marketing is one skill farmers say is the most difficult to master, so our 2020 agenda includes two leading voices in the grain marketing arena.  Dave Fogel, Vice President with Advance Trading, Inc., will share how to ‘profit from chaos,’ drawing on his 35 years of experience working with producers and grain elevator managers to squeeze profit from the markets. He mentors close to 25 Advance Trading branch brokers with clientele focused on corn, soybeans and wheat, as well as livestock/end-user accounts. Matt Bennett, owner of Bennett Consulting, is a Windsor, Ill., farmer, former grain elevator owner, and Channel Seed’s grain marketing consultant. Bennett’s firm specializes in formulating risk-management strategies for corn and soybean farmers and livestock producers.

Related:Master the business of agriculture

Those experts and more are waiting to meet you at the 2020 summit. Go to to register and earn an early registration discount. Check the site regularly for agenda updates. See you in Iowa!

The summit is sponsored by Anuvia, Advanced Trading Inc., Farmers Mutual Hail, Channel Seed, Farm Credit, Grinnell Mutual, BASF, Commstock Investments and FBS Systems Inc.

About the Author(s)

Mike Wilson

Senior Executive Editor, Farm Progress

Mike Wilson is the senior executive editor for Farm Progress. He grew up on a grain and livestock farm in Ogle County, Ill., and earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural journalism from the University of Illinois. He was twice named Writer of the Year by the American Agricultural Editors’ Association and is a past president of the organization. He is also past president of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists, a global association of communicators specializing in agriculture. He has covered agriculture in 35 countries.

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