Risk Management Course for Specialty Crop Growers


Risk Management Course for Specialty Crop Growers

This six-week course introduces growers to different risk management tools including financial planning, niche marketing, whole systems analysis, and enterprise budgeting. Class participants used the course manual to apply principles learned during the classes to their own agricultural businesses.

Course Manual: Building a Sustainable Business


Syllabus: (Syllabus.pdf)

Class 1: Setting Goals and Vision

Topics: Define values, prioritize goals and develop a mission statement.

Articles and publications:

Introduction to Risk Management: Understanding Agricultural Risks

Sample Map

www.attra.org/attra-pub/PDF/producerforms.pdf, page 15

Commodity Insurance Fact Sheets






Power Point Presentations

Setting Goals and Values for Your Farm Business

Class 2: Assessing Goals and Values, and Researching Market Potential

Topics: Assess current state of marketing, operations, human resource and finances on your farm.

Articles and publications

Whole Farm Planning for Economic and Environmental Sustainability

Managing risk in an inherently risky business

Volume 15, Number 10

S.W.O.T. Analysis 

Class 3: Developing a Market Strategy

Topics: Direct marketing channels, industry trends, marketing in Southern Oregon 

Articles and publications:

Developing a Marketing Plan for Your Farm

Marketing Strategy for Farmers and Ranchers

Power Point Presentations:

Alternative Marketing for Small and Medium-Sized Farms

Class 4: Farm Operations Strategy- Operations and Human Resources

Topics: Scale of production, work force needs, operation strategies and management approaches.

Articles and publications:

 Oregon Tilth Certified Organic: How to Achieve Organic Certification (Crop Farms)
Instructor: Melissa Matthewson

Class 5:  

Topics: Enterprise budgeting, financial projections and strategic evaluation, Attra Publication

Articles and publications


10 Habits of Highly Profitable Farmers

Bart Elevelds presentation

Alternative Financial/Organizational Structures of Farm and Agribusiness Firms

Agricultural Business Insurance

Enterprise Budgets and Production Costs for Organic Production, Attra Publication

Using Enterprise Budgets to Make Decisions about Your Farm

Class 6: Managing Production Risk 

Articles and publications:

Topics: Strategies for managing production risk including soil fertility, season extension, succession planting, and pest management.

Scheduling Vegetable Plantings for Continuous Harvest, Attra Publication

Power Point Presentations:

Soil Fertility Blueberry Economics (connects to the OSU Catalog Blueberry Publications list)

Small Farms
Oregon State University Extension
569 Hanley Road
Central Point , OR 97502
(541) 776-7371 x208


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