AMES, Iowa – Iowa producers and producer groups interested in learning about organic markets and the transition from traditional production to organic production are invited to attend the “Is Organic Farming Right For Me?” workshop offer on Jan. 24, 26, 31 or Feb. 2, 2006. The meetings are sponsored by Iowa State University (ISU) Extension Value Added Agriculture Program, with assistance from the ISU Organic Agriculture Program.
“Demand from consumers for organic food is outpacing supply,” said Mary Holz-Clause, program director for the Value Added Agriculture Program at ISU Extension. “However, lack of knowledge on the transition to organic production is an intimidating factor preventing many producers from considering a switch.”
Topics include a look at a variety of organic markets. Tim Daley with Stonebridge, Ltd. will discuss organic grain marketing. Extension specialists will discuss the transition, including economics, cash flow, regulations and the certification process and production issues such as segregation of grain, fertility and weed management and livestock production. A panel of organic producers will share their experiences in transitioning to organic and marketing their grain and beef products.
Meeting locations include
Jan. 24 - US Bank Community Meeting Room, Vinton
Jan. 26 - Hotel Ottumwa, Ottumwa
Jan. 31 - Lakeshore Family Restaurant, Storm Lake
Feb. 2 - Midwest Opportunities Building, Turner Room, Corning.
The workshops will be held from to , with registration beginning at and lunch following the program. Pre-registration is strongly encouraged. The cost of the workshop is $15 or $20 at the door and includes lunch, breaks and materials. Producers can register by calling the Value Added Ag office at (515) 294-0588 or filling out a registration form located on http://www.agmrc.org/agmrc/calendar/valueaddedseriesbroch.pdf
For more information, contact Margaret Smith or Madeline Schultz at the Value Added Agriculture Program at (515) 294-0588 or firstname.lastname@example.org.