About Risk Management Education

Written in 1997 and updated in 2013, the Introduction to Risk Management publication was established as the guide that the Extension Risk Management Education program would follow to define risk management. Editors Laurence Crane, Gene Gantz, Steve Isaacs, Doug Jose, and Rod Sharpe discuss what agricultural risk is and the importance of educating producers to manage their own level of risk. This publication has now been translated to Spanish. All applications to the Extension Risk Management Education program must involve or touch on at least one of the risk management topics discussed in this publication: marketing, financial, human, legal and production.

Today’s farmers and ranchers face an unprecedented risk environment. Never has the need for risk management education been more important than now. Risk management involves choosing tools and strategies designed to reduce the financial effects of the uncertainties of commodity prices, government policies, crop yields, global economies, weather, human factors and other conditions that can cause fluctuations in farm income.

The North Central Extension Risk Management Education Center continues to assess the risk management needs of producers in the north central region by holding focus groups, developing surveys, and discussion with producers and professionals working in the agricultural industry. Needs continue to evolve and are dependent on many factors such as; commodity prices, farm bill programs, financial access, input costs, legal and labor issues, and many more. These needs are taken into account when developing each RFA. Because some issues may be so important, Advisory Council members may request to see applications from project directors dealing with some of these current risk management issues.

Read a discussion of risk management issues and needs which have surfaced in recent years from the Center’s audiences, stakeholders, and Advisory Council members. This discussion provides ideas and guidance for individuals or groups working to educate producers and who may be considering an application for Center funding to deliver risk management education.