Pasture Walk Focuses on Current Financial Climates

Name and Position/Title:
Beth Ellen Doran, Extension Beef Program Specialist

Fiscal Year Submitted:

POW Title and Number:
140 Iowa Beef Center

Pasture Walk Focuses on Current Financial Climate

In June 2009, the financial climate was uncertain for cattle producers.  High corn prices had reduced the number of acres available for grazing, and forage-based producers were experiencing historically high rental rates for pasture.  Some producers were exiting the industry; others were adjusting cow-calf numbers to accommodate carrying capacity, which would affect their marketing plans.  Because of changes in BSE rules, renderers were indicating they would no longer accept carcasses from animals over 30 months-of-age.  The availability of ag credit and governmental loans for pasture-based production was tightening.

A Pasture Walk addressing the current financial climate was held in northwest Iowa on June 30 near Correctionville.  Thirty-nine people from 11 NW Iowa counties attended the program.

The Pasture Walk was cooperatively sponsored and funded by Iowa State University Extension, Iowa Beef Center, Woodbury County Natural Resources Conservation Service, Woodbury County Soil and Water Conservation District, Woodbury County Cattlemen’s Association, Farm Credit Services of American and Iowa Forage and Grassland Council.

Topics included managed intensive grazing, marketing plans adjustable to changes in carrying capacity, determining pasture rental rates, dead animal disposal, ag credit for forage-based producers and governmental loan programs for pasture-based production.

Outcome Statement: 
Participants gained knowledge in how to: 

Direct impacts of the program were as follows:

One local beef producer, who has close to 400 acres in paddock grazing, commented that the information on the financial aspects of grazing and the options for carcasses was a good mix along with the traditional “pasture walk” information.


140 Iowa Beef Center

Page last updated: May 5, 2010
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