The place to be July 7-8 if you are serious about improving your management skills and keeping abreast of a changing agricultural environment is Purdue University. Plan to attend the two-day Top Farmer Conference held each year.
Once called the Top Crop Farmer Workshop, the conference has been broadened to appeal to anyone in agriculture who wants to key in on sharpening management skills for the challenges that lie ahead. It’s sponsored by the Center for Commercial Agriculture at Purdue University, and Jim Mintert, director, and Michael Langemeier, associate director, are key players in putting the conference together.
The focus this year will certainly be on financial issues, Mintert says. He notes that tightening crop budgets over the past couple of years have reduced the margin for error in running a profitable operation.
Mike Boehlje, Purdue Extension ag economist, will talk about 10 key questions you need to ask about growth in the future. Other analysts will discuss the overall business climate that any business must operate in today.
Keynote speaker for the event is Bruce Vincent, a third-generation Montana logger. Why bring a logger to talk to Midwestern farmers?
“He will share his struggles with operating his business in a changing environment, and one with conflict,” Mintert explains. “Midwestern farmers should be able to relate to his insights and see how it could apply to their businesses.”
The Top Farmer Conference will be held at the Beck Agricultural Center at the Purdue University Agronomy Research Center on U.S. 52, about 3 miles west of West Lafayette.
Registration is $350 per person. Learn more at ag.purdue.edu/commercialag/topfarmer. If you have specific questions and want to contact someone directly, call Aissa Good at 317-496-3884, or email [email protected]. She is the managing director and business development manager for the Center for Commercial Agriculture.