Covid-19 has ushered in an ever-changing and uncertain “new normal.” Frequently modified “rules” for local foods especially impact beginning farmers who are more apt to be highly leveraged and so reluctant to make necessary course corrections without the traditional market analysis. Because new problems sometimes call for tried and true solutions, the capacity for farmers to take action can be realized by “flipping” the SWOT model (which traditionally started with internal Strengths and Weaknesses) to focus more on the external (Opportunities and Threats). When coached to consider the off-farm environment, farmers can anticipate short-term shocks and adapt their pre-Covid strengths to meet these challenges. Effectively handling small changes will ultimately empower producers to mitigate risks that accompany longer term marketplace modifications. This presentation re-frames KPMG’s “realities of retailing in a COVID-19 world” to categorize challenges that farmers face, providing examples of how farmers used SWOT to their advantage, pivoting pro-actively. Session participants will learn coaching strategies to empower beginning (and seasoned) farmers in their own communities to face uncertain times ahead with confidence.
|2022 Extension Risk Management Education National Conference