Olivia Hanlon
FFED Extension Education Specialist

The pandemic of 2020 provided opportunity for specialty producers in Iowa to expand production and sales. But managing risk for specialty production is critical to capitalizing on new market opportunities.

Beginning Jan. 6, 2021, the Farm, Food and Enterprise Development program of Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will sponsor a series of free webinars for specialty crop producers. They will feature new tools and resources on how to manage risk. The webinars will take place on consecutive Wednesdays over the noon hour. The last scheduled webinar is March 10.

The 10 sessions will cover various risk management topics, each featuring different speakers. Topics will include why risk management is important, types of insurance policies and options for specialty crops, whole farm revenue protection, developing a diversified market and profitable crops, and weather patterns and management tools.

Register for any or all of the webinars online at

Sessions are presented live, with time for Q & A. They will be archived for viewing on the FFED Small Farms page.

Dates and topics

Below is a partial list of dates, topics and speakers for each webinar. The full list is available on the FFED Small Farms page.

  • Jan. 6. Why is risk management important and an overview of risk management strategies, with Rex Nelson, associate extension educator with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension.
  • Jan. 13. Crop insurance resources and tools and types of insurance policies, and options for specialty crops, with Amanda Weigel, agriculture program specialist with the Iowa Farm Service Agency.
  • Jan. 20. Whole farm revenue protection, with Craig Christianson, risk management specialist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency.
  • Jan. 27. Risk management for perennial crops, with Joe Hannan, commercial horticulture specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach.

For more information contact Olivia Hanlon, FFED extension education specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach, at

Iowa State University Extension & Outreach

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