Diversity, Direction and Dollars 2013, an agricultural forum, will be held on Jan. 15, at the Ramada Inn Grand Dakota Lodge in Dickinson, N.D. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m., followed at 9 a.m. with a welcome from Haylie Shipp with the Northern Ag Network.
This program will feature internationally known speakers on topics affecting agriculture in the western Dakotas and eastern Montana, says Kurt Froelich, North Dakota State University Extension Service agent in Stark and Billings counties. It will give producers ideas for improving productivity and decreasing costs while providing high-quality food produced in a sustainable manner.
The keynote speaker is Michael Swanson who is an agricultural economist and consultant for Wells Fargo. He will discuss the risks and rewards of ultra-low interest rates. In an era of ultra-low interest rates, what should agricultural producers be doing to secure their economic success? How stable are interest rates?
Agricultural producers also are financial managers, so they need to consider alternative investments to land, Froelich says.
Phil Westra, Colorado State University weed science professor, will discuss herbicide resistant weeds and future chemical rotations.
Wheat development and nitrogen management will be discussed by Joel Ransom, NDSU Extension agronomist. With the cost of nitrogen skyrocketing, farm managers want to be sure they get a return on their nitrogen investment.
Leon Osborne, University of North Dakota professor and UND Regional Weather Information Center director, will discuss weather forecasts. Osborne has more than 35 years of atmospheric science experience in academia, research and industry. Weather may play a critical role in determining producer success or failure because soil moisture is much less than last year.
Jan Knodel, NDSU Extension Service entomologist, will discuss how to effectively use insecticides. Insects can become serious pests in certain situations and can have a huge economic impact on producers. Knodel will provide ideas on how producers can get the most benefit from insect control strategies.
Producers should come away with at least two good ideas that they can apply to their farms during the next cropping season and at least one good idea to position their farming operation to take advantage of the changes occurring, Froelich says.
A registration fee of $15 covers all breaks, the noon lunch and materials and is payable at the door.