Launch Your Marketing Plan: Winning the Game

Ron Hook, Farm Management Field Specialist, Northwest 
Problem Statement:
The best prices for a crop often occur at or before the time it is planted.  Selling the crop at the appropriate time, especially before it is planted, is difficult for most farmers.  The development of a pre-harvest marketing plan that uses crop insurance and sets target prices and dates is important to successful marketing.
Programmatic Response:
The Launch Your Marketing Plan workshop was conducted around the state of Iowa through the joint sponsorship of ISUE, County Farm Bureaus and other ag businesses.  This workshop provides a simple format for a pre-harvest marketing plan as well as information on how to implement the plan using various tools demonstrated in the workshop.  Five workshops were held in northwest Iowa with 111 participants.
A survey of participants conducted at the end of the workshops held during January March 2006 was returned by 687 individuals. 
      47% indicated that in the past they had developed a crop marketing plan, and 20% said that they had actually implemented the plan. 
      97% of those that attended this workshop indicated that they intended to develop a pre-harvest marketing plan for 2006 crop, and 80% said that they did intend to implement the entire plan. 
      73% said that they had done pre-harvest marketing of grain in the past with the average slightly over one third of the total crop marketed.
      97% indicated that they planned to pre-harvest market 2006 crop with 56% of the corn crop and 55% of the soybean crop as the maximum amount to be marketed pre-harvest.
      Nearly 98% rated the value of this educational program as 4 or 5 out of a possible 5.
      After the workshop.
               94% said that they better understood pre-harvest marketing plans and why it is important
               92% said that they better understood the components of a pre-harvest marketing plan
               81% said that they better understood fixed price and minimum price marketing tools used in a pre-harvest plan.
               85% said that they better understood how to modify their pre-harvest market plan in a disciplined way.
      When asked for comments in their own words:
               I thought it was the most simple and most disciplined seminar I have attended.
               Ive always used post-harvest marketing.  Now I have more confidence to try some pre-harvest selling.
               This helped relate the use of revenue insurance for making a simple marketing plan that adds dollars to the bottom line.
               The game, by making trades it helps a lot.

104 - Agricultural Risk and Financial Management

Page last updated: July 11, 2006
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