Extension and Ag Research News


Northwest Farm Managers Association to Hold 100th Annual Meeting

Read about some of the association's history.

David Kohl, Virginia Tech professor emeritus of agricultural economics, headlines the centennial meeting of the Northwest Farm Managers Association on Feb. 3 at the Holiday Inn in Fargo. The meeting is open to the public.

Kohl will discuss the key economic and financial changes that producers face and how they can successfully position their business in 2009 and beyond in his session, “The New Economic Realities in American Agriculture.”

“Kohl is well-recognized within the agricultural industry and can give us some insights on the future economics of agriculture,” says Andy Swenson, North Dakota State University Extension Service agricultural economist.

Kohl also will speak at the noon banquet. Joseph Chapman, NDSU president, will make some remarks.

Other topics and presenters are:

  • Today’s farm technology and its potential impact to your bottom line – Kirk Wesley, Case IH product specialist, Franklin, Wis.
  • Outlook for the soybean, corn and wheat markets - Virg Robinson, Pioneer Hi-Bred International Producer Service Center market manager, Des Moines, Iowa, and Public Television’s Market-to-Market senior analyst
  • What you need to know about the 2008 farm bill with emphasis on whether to select the Average Farm Revenue Election – Dwight Aakre and Swenson, NDSU agricultural economists

The official birth date of the Northwest Farm Managers Association is debatable. Hiram Drache, local author, noted in his history of the organization, “From Plowshares to Printouts,” that W.J. Allen, Dakota Farmer publisher, wrote “our record shows the Northwest Farm Mangers Association grew out of meeting of the Tri-state Grain Show in 1907, when some 20-odd owners and managers decided to get together annually for discussion.”

However, officially organizing the association may have taken awhile because Drache also refers to a clipping that states the second annual meeting of the Farm Managers Association was to be held on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 1913.

Two bylaws of the organization are “to bring scientific knowledge to bear upon the problem solving of agriculture” and to “serve as a clearinghouse for practical ideas in farm and agribusiness firm management.”

Examples of topics during the 1914 meeting include “The Management of Labor on Large Farms” by John Dalrymple and “The Factors Which Influence the Success of Substituting Tractors for Horses as Farm Power” by C.F. Chase, North Dakota Agricultural College.

The organization flourished from 1925 to 1951 under the leadership of Cap Miller, chair of the Agricultural Economics Department at the NDAC. Miller also is recognized as the founder of modern-day 4-H from his previous job as a county agent in Iowa. In those days, the association held a multiday annual meeting, with an evening ballroom dance. The association also did farm tours during the summer.

More history of the association and a photo gallery are available from the NDSU Institute for Regional Studies at http://www.lib.ndsu.nodak.edu/ndirs/collections/photography/Photofindingaids/nfma.htm.

The centennial meeting is open to the public and begins at 9 a.m. A registration fee of $40 includes a noon meal and breaks. Call (701) 231-7393 for more information.

NDSU Agriculture Communication

Source:Andy Swenson, (701) 231-7379, andrew.swenson@ndsu.edu
Editor:Rich Mattern, (701) 231-6136, richard.mattern@ndsu.edu
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