Hops and malting barley were very popular crops produced in Wisconsin in the late 1800´s and early 1900´s. Interest in local food, local products, and increased demand from local craft brewers has sparked huge interest in growing hops and malting barley. Most interest has come from non-farmers with little background in agriculture. Current farmers that have expressed interest are mainly commodity farmers who have little, if any experience in direct marketing their products or producing a niche crop. Niche crops require tremendous attention to detail to meet standards set by craft brewers.
The project is focused on the following areas:
• Production management – data gathered from Washington, Oregon, Vermont, Germany, and Denmark
• Marketing (direct to end users and through start-up organizations)
• Economic feasibility
• Developing a business plan
• Statewide association development
Potential producers from a four state area have attended seminars in Wisconsin. The audience is not a traditional Extension audience and many were not familiar with the UW-Extension system. In the 2011 post meeting evaluation, 54 percent had never been to an Extension program results were similar for 2010 and 2012 seminars. We are reaching a totally new audience.
During the breakout session, presenters will give an overview of the project; discuss the approach to reach new audiences, and challenges in gathering information on crops that are making a comeback. Finally, presenters will discuss developing a program for non-traditional audiences.
|Conference||2013 Extension Risk Management Education National Conference|
|Presentation Type||60-Minute Concurrent|