Start Smart Conference to Focus on Financial Strategies for Your Farm

07-15-2019 in News Release


Industry experts to provide advice for young and beginning farmers

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – July 3, 2019 – The Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers (CSIF) and Accu-Steel Fabric Covered Buildings, will co-host Start Smart: Tools for Beginning Farmers Conference at the Iowa State Fair on August 15 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Penningroth Media Center in the Cattle Barn at the Iowa State Fair.

The conference features a dynamic line-up of speakers who will help livestock farmers understand the financial programs available to them, provide strategies on ways to manage risk, and provide insight on how to develop a business plan and set up a farm business. There will also be two expert panels moderated by Delaney Howell, host of Iowa Public Television’s Market to Market – one that will provide an ag marketing outlook and the other will answer questions about financing and the lending process.

Industry experts Morgan Waldeier with Timmins, Jacobsen & Strawhacker, LLP, will talk about setting up your farm business and tax planning considerations; Steve Ferguson with the Iowa Finance Authority, will discuss the Beginning Farmer Loan and Tax Credit Programs; and Caleb Hopkins with Westside Bank, will explain financial and business plan development.  Market analysts include Sue Martin, owner of Ag & Investment Services, Inc. and

Naomi Blohm, Senior Market Advisor, with Stewart-Petersen, Inc.

“The Coalition received a number of calls from livestock farmers over the past year – many from young people wanting to get into farming, but weren’t sure where to start or how to secure financing,” said Brian Waddingham, executive director of CSIF.  “We also heard from many well-established livestock farmers looking for assistance to diversify their farms due to ongoing low commodity prices and relatively high land costs. This event will provide insight to help all of Iowa’s livestock farmers better understand ways to manage risk and succeed in the long-run.”

The conference is sponsored by the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers, Accu-Steel Fabric Covered Buildings and in partnership with IPTV’s Market to Market and the Iowa State Fair.

Registration for the event is free if completed by August 14, however, participants will need to purchase admission tickets to the Iowa State Fair. Discount admission tickets are available now at For more information about the conference and to register, visit or call 800.932.2436.  Space is limited.

The Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers was created by farmers to help farmers raise livestock successfully and responsibly.  It’s a joint partnership involving the Iowa Beef Industry Council, Iowa Cattlemen’s Association, Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, Iowa Pork Producers Association, Iowa Poultry Association, Iowa Soybean Association, Iowa Turkey Federation and Midwest Dairy Association.

The non-profit, non-partisan organization provides assistance to farmers at no cost.  CSIF does not lobby or develop policy.  Farm families wanting a helping hand can contact the coalition at 800.932.2436.


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