Rutgers Cooperative Extension presents a new online version of the popular Annie’s Project, offering New Jersey women farmers relevant and important farm risk management lessons to help them succeed.
The six-week online training course, “Annie Goes Online: Risk Management On Your Kitchen Table,” will be held virtually on Zoom, one evening per week, on Jan. 11, 18, and 25; Feb. 15 and 22; and March 1 from 6 to 9 p.m.
“As in the previous Annie’s Project programs, this workshop is designed to educate and train new and aspiring farm women on risk management strategies and provide tools for successful business management,” says Robin Brumfield, extension specialist in farm management, Rutgers Cooperative Extension.
An optional all-day, in-person tax workshop on Feb. 9 will be offered at the Vegetable Growers Association Meeting held during the 2023 New Jersey Agricultural Convention in Atlantic City.
Registration is currently open and runs through December 31. The cost of $150 includes workshop study materials and admission to the NJ Ag Convention, Feb. 7 to 9.
Financial assistance, provided by Farm Credit East is available to those in need, but candidates must first fill out a scholarship application. Funds are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Each three-hour, online session will include review and discussion of the previous week’s business or marketing plan assignment or climate-biosecurity plan. Following that, extension educators, business industry representatives and producers will give live presentations. Please note that presentations, not participant discussions, will be recorded.
“The economic instability, supply-chain disruption, and extreme weather impacts of the last few years have led us to focus on these pertinent risk management issues,” explained Brumfield.
The course starts with an insightful session on transition and managing marketing, financial and human resource risks by keynote speaker Wenfei Uva, co-owner of Seaberry Farm – a 36-acre specialty fruit and flower farm in Federalsburg, MD. Uva received her Ph.D. from Cornell University in agricultural economics and was an extension leader for the Cornell Horticultural Business Management and Marketing Program from 1999 to 2007.
In this course, speakers and instructors will cover the following topics: Labor recruitment and labor laws; income statements, cash flow statements and personal finances; food safety and water use regulations; and insurance coverage and taxes. Presentations relevant to risk management will cover soil fertility and soil health, crop/livestock production budgets, controlled environment agriculture overview, storm water management, livestock-poultry disease biosecurity, and marketing and supply channels overview.
“New, aspiring, and current women farmers will gain educational training on the essentials of preparing a business plan, considered a vital roadmap to success for any business,” added Brumfield. Participants will also benefit from networking opportunities with their peers and other agricultural professionals.
For more information about the program, visit Rutgers Farm Management Website. Material for this program is based upon work supported by USDA/NIFA under Award Number 2021-70027-34693.