Carolinas/Virginia NAMA Host Tornado Relief Effort

Written by NAMA on Wednesday, March 7, 2012 , 3:32 pm

As you have seen and heard on the news, the recent tornados left a path of destruction, especially across Indiana. This hits especially close to home for Carolinas/Virginia NAMA member and regional director, Ann Camden, who like many of us, was at Commodity Classic when the tornado touched down in Nashville.  While Nashville was mostly spared, Ann’s parents’ home and family farm in New Pekin, Indiana was not.

“They lost the house, truck, barn and several tractors,” said Ann in an e-mail to fellow C/V NAMA member, Jeff Tennant. “It’s a total loss, but they are physically fine.” Ann’s uncle was at Commodity Classic so she rode with him to Indiana where she is helping her family pick up the pieces. Her parents have found a temporary residence and many in the community are helping them empty out the house and clean up the farm. 

If you would like to help Ann’s family, they are in need of Wal-Mart gift cards, Kroger gift cards, work clothes, work coats and work gloves. Contact Mary Cameron at Gibbs & Soell (mcameron@gibbs-soell.com, 919-870-5718) to coordinate your donation.

If you would like to help others across the Midwest and South who were affected by the tornados, you can also donate to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief.  To contribute, go to http://www.redcross.org/, call (800) RED CROSS (800-733-2767) or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.  Contributions also may be sent to local Red Cross chapters or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37243, Washington, D.C. 20013.

North Central NAMA Teams with University to Host Networking Event

Written by NAMA on Wednesday, March 7, 2012 , 3:32 pm

The North Central NAMA Chapter hosted a Networking Event for professionals and students on Feb. 9, 2012.  More than 70 students attended this event that involved roundtable discussions and a Career Fair.

The evening kicked off with roundtable discussions that included topics helping students prepare to find a job, as well as issues facing communications professionals.  Students were able to attend four roundtable discussions during the hour.

Following the roundtables, a short career fair was held.  Nearly 15 agribusiness companies and agencies were part of the career fair that allowed students to ask more specific questions about opportunities available within the individual organizations.

With the success of the first event, organizers are looking ahead to the next event.  For more information on future events, contact Becca Yaklich, North Central NAMA Student Liaison Committee Chair, Becca.Yaklich@agribank.com.

Iowa NAMA Meeting features guest speaker Ryan Burchett of Mississippi River Distilling Company

Written by NAMA on Wednesday, March 7, 2012 , 3:31 pm

The February Iowa NAMA meeting was held February 24, with guest Ryan Burchett of Mississippi River Distilling Company speaking to the group about his start-up business in LeClaire, Iowa.  Ryan and his brother Garrett decided to take a chance on a dream and start Mississippi River Distilling Company in 2010.  Since opening, they have been featured on FoxNews.com and named “Best of What’s New” by Midwest Living Magazine.  Ryan explained how they got started and established themselves as a “local” company – with everything from their building to their t-shirts and especially their ingredients coming from local resources.  All of the grain for their distillery comes from local farmers, and everything is done under one roof, from raw grain to bottling and hand-marking each bottle.  Ryan also discussed their sales and marketing tactics with the group, describing how their Facebook presence and word of mouth have been their main tools since opening.  Iowa NAMA members greatly appreciated Ryan taking the time to talk about his local family business; to learn more, please visit the Mississippi River Distilling Company website at www.mrdistilling.com.

Midlands NAMA Hosted Farm Financials 101 Session

Written by NAMA on Wednesday, March 7, 2012 , 3:30 pm

Midlands NAMA came together for an informative session on Farm Financials 101 this month in Lincoln, Nebraska.  Industry experts, Jason Ladman, Director, and Tim Brhel, Ag Finance Specialist, both of Water Street Solutions, discussed the financial environment farmers are facing today.

The group learned how farmers leverage their production with insurance, marketing and financial tools to maintain a healthy working capital and equity.  They heard case studies of several operations that are successfully using an integrated strategy to manage their farm.

What’s driving this need for better financial management?  Extremely volatile commodity prices, skyrocketing land values and an unstable global economy are some of the leading factors that cause farmers to hone their financial management skills.  According to Brhel, “The key concern is really evaluating the risk bearing ability of each farmer’s unique operation as a whole and then making a decision based on the long-term impact.”  When decisions are well planned, farmers are able to do what is right for their operation, improve communication with lenders, suppliers and investors and overall build better business practices.

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