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Participants receive instruction during the second session of the Implementing Risk Management Marketing Strategies workshop at Camp Harry E. Daniels[ in Elloree

The South Carolina State University 1890 Research & Extension program is hosting a five-part workshop series for small and minority farmers.

The Implementing Risk Management Marketing Plans and Strategies workshop series provides agricultural program education, individualized training on small farm risk management and understanding marketing plans and strategies at an enterprise level. The series began Aug. 7 and will conclude Nov. 13 at Camp Harry E. Daniels, 116 Camp Daniels Road, Elloree.

“The workshop series provides an opportunity for farmers to get valuable insight from the presenters and our extension agents on available resources like USDA’s risk management program, Heirs’ Property Preservation and other important programs for protecting their land and crops,” said Dr. Louis Whitesides, vice president and executive director of 1890 programs. “As the online business model continues to evolve, we must educate farmers on how to brand and market their products on non-traditional platforms such as e-commerce and social media to succeed in selling their products.”

As part of the series, farmers will receive an overview on risk management and risk management tools, including information on crop insurance programs, market and disaster assistance, animal and plant health and recovery from natural disasters. Farmers will also gain knowledge on general marketing principles, perform individualized marketing assessments and will also participate in group discussions with presenters, Dr. Laurance Crane, National Crop Insurance Services; Dr. Albert Essel, executive administrator for the Association of 1890 Extension Administrators; and SC State 1890 agriculture extension agents.

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“It is important that our farmers have an accurate inventory of all their assets, including equipment they may not use often,” said Mark Nettles, sustainable agriculture and natural resources extension agent. “We are educating farmers on many agribusiness topics including, farm business planning, risk assessments, crop insurance and marketing principles focusing on the value of using social media as a marketing tool.”

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Nettles noted that, as a culminating project, farmers will work on developing business plans using the skills and information learned while attending the first few sessions.

“Enterprise planning and budget management are very important skills that farmers need. Upon the completion of these workshops, farmers will have a good business plan that will help them to obtain credit and help them with farm taxes,” said Nettles.

The Implementing Risk Management Marketing Plans and Strategy workshop series is being held in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Southern Extension Risk Management Education, the Association of 1890 Extension Administrators and the National Crop Insurance Services.

The remaining dates for the Implementing Risk Management Marketing Plans and Strategy workshop are: Workshop #4: Oct. 23; and Workshop #5: Nov. 13.

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For more information on the Implementing Risk Management Marketing Plans and Strategies workshop, contact Mark Nettles, sustainable agriculture and natural resources Extension agent, at mnettles@scsu.edu.

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