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Conference for small-acreage entrepreneurs offers large lineup of speakers


Linda Geist
University of Missouri Extension
Phone: 573-882-9185

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2017

Story source:

Randa Doty, 660-582-8101

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. – Registration is open for the fourth annual Small Acreage and Land Entrepreneur (SALE) Conference on March 4 in St. Joseph.

Topics include beekeeping, cover crops, Missouri fence law, poultry, growing blueberries, agroforestry and more, says Randa Doty, University of Missouri Extension agriculture business specialist. She says speakers will give practical information for small-acreage operators.

Speakers from MU Extension, Lincoln University and Northwest Missouri State University talk on a variety of topics. Other speakers include small agricultural business operators and representatives of the Missouri Department of Conservation and USDA.

MU Extension livestock specialist Amie Schleicher will give attendees information on poultry production. Jenna Williams of Lincoln University gives tips for sellers at farmers markets. Hank Stelzer, MU Extension forestry specialist, talks about planting windbreaks and the Missouri Managed Woods program. MU Extension agronomist Wayne Flanary gives an update on cover crops and how to take and understand a soil test. Doty talks about Missouri’s complex fence laws. Horticulture specialist Tom Fowler tells how to grow blueberries, and horticulturist Tim Baker offers tips for spring growing. Agricultural business specialist Katie Neuner tells how to evaluate resources on a property.

Joe Lawler of the Missouri Department of Conservation speaks on pond and fish management. Beekeeper Raymond Heldenbrand shares his experiences and advice. Kim Wells of Wells Family Farms shares her experiences and ideas on direct sales of grass-fed beef. Representatives of FCS Financial, USDA, the Missouri Department of Conservation and the Missouri Department of Agriculture will share information on financial and conservation resources for land entrepreneurs. Rod Barr of Northwest Missouri State University tells how small farmers can be advocates for agriculture. Lonnie Messbarger and Jason Braunecker share new ideas on growing mushrooms. Jeff Powelson tells how to attract pollinators to your farm. Powelson, Messbarger and Braunecker are with the Missouri Department of Conservation.  

The event runs 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, March 4, at Spratt Hall, Missouri Western State University, St. Joseph.

Doty suggests registering by Feb. 27 to take advantage of the early-bird discount. Go to for more information. If you have questions, contact Doty at 660-582-8101 or, or Tom Fowler, MU Extension in Buchanan County, at 816-279-1691 or

MU Extension, the USDA Farm Service Agency and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service sponsor the event.