Three new summertime short courses at Colorado State University will boost the business acumen of crop and livestock producers who want to improve their operations with a better understanding of contemporary agricultural science.
The multidisciplinary agricultural training courses, open to the public, will include both technical classroom training and interactive field demonstrations. The short courses are aimed at better business practices, improved natural-resource conservation and enhanced profitability for agriculture.
The courses are part of College of Agricultural Sciences initiatives that harness campus expertise to address pressing state and global challenges in food production, food safety, human health, land management and water management.
The courses are:
• Beef University, May 17-18, CSU Agricultural Research, Development and Education Center, Fort Collins. This course, described as “beginning with the end in mind,” emphasizes outcome-based management strategies for beef producers – with the ultimate goal of enhancing beef marketability, meat safety and meat quality. The course will include a tour of feedlot and packing-plant facilities, animal handling, beef fabrication, steak sampling and discussion of current consumer expectations and demand. The course will be taught by Jason Ahola, CSU associate professor of beef production systems, and Dale Woerner, CSU assistant professor of meat science. Cost is $150 per person. For more information and to register, e-mail BeefWorkshop@mail.colostate.edu, or call (970) 491-3750.
• Irrigated Pasture Grazing School, May 22-24, CSU Agricultural Research, Development and Education Center, Fort Collins. This course, designed for cow-calf producers, examines the advantages of feeding strategies centered on grazed forage. The approach means less reliance on harvested forages as feed and can result in improved producer profits. Yet it often requires changes in calving dates and some intensive management strategies aimed at boosting forage for grazing. The course will address a variety of management issues, including stocking rates, stocking density, minimizing animal stress during handling and effective fencing and irrigation systems. Leading the course will be Jason Ahola, CSU associate professor of beef production systems; Joe Brummer, CSU associate professor and Extension forage specialist; and colleagues in the university’s Department of Animal Sciences. Cost is $550 per person. For more information and to register, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call (970) 491-4988.
• Building for the Future: Farm and Livestock Business Planning, mid-August, various locations. Participants will meet four times over 16 months at CSU offices near Greeley, Burlington, Rocky Ford and Grand Junction. Those enrolled will develop extensive business plans for their current or planned operations. The course, designed for mid-career agricultural professionals, will focus on financial analysis and strategic management practices for farm and ranch operations in limited-irrigation settings – settings shared by many producers in the semi-arid West, where drought and conflicting water demands affect many farmers and ranchers. Specifically, participants will learn about competencies needed for successful integrated water-resource management in agricultural systems. More broadly, farm and livestock managers will become more proficient at business management applicable to their own operations with discussion and analysis tailored to those operations. James Pritchett, associate professor in the CSU Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, will lead the course. Cost is $400 per person. For more information and to register, e-mail email@example.com or call (970) 491-5496.