Producer group being organized for Wyoming’s Big Horn Basin | TSLN.com

Producer group being organized for Wyoming’s Big Horn Basin

A course designed to help Big Horn Basin agricultural producers achieve long-term success is scheduled this November and December.

Challenge Group targets beginning agricultural producers and provides instruction in sound business practices they can apply to their operations, said Sandra Frost, University of Wyoming Cooperative Extension Service educator in Powell. The program was last offered in 2008.

“The course is designed to help them make a profit and improve their operations over time,” Frost said.

The five-week, eight-session course begins Monday, Nov. 15. The course has three parts: classroom work, farm visits and a confidential evaluation of financial books by a University of Wyoming economist.

Participants will develop business plans and learn how to evaluate profit and loss for their operations, said Frost. They will also learn about marketing, risk management, labor management and other factors in agricultural operations.

“This class showed me how to get started and how to read and interpret the bottom lines – big help,” said Tim Beck of Lovell, a member of the 2008 class.

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One producer had begun accurately measuring herd performance, and others said they were able to pay off operating loans earlier than in the past. Several graduates of the 2008 class said they are better connected with the people they met in the class, and they ask colleagues questions about new ideas to improve their operations, Frost said.

Visits to each others’ operations provide opportunities for group members to connect as colleagues.

“It helps them build a group of friends they can use as a resource when they have problems,” Frost said.

Challenge Group is limited to 10 operations. The registration fee is $50. To register, fill out an application form and return it to UW CES Park County, P.O. Box 3099, Cody, WY 82414.

The brochure and application form are online at http://www.uwyo.edu/bighorncrops/info.asp?p=5991.

For more information or to request a brochure and application form, contact Frost at 307-754-8836 or sfrost1@uwyo.edu.

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