Dec 28, 2011

Great Plains Growers Conference Set for Jan.5-7 in St. Joseph, MO

The Great Plains Growers Conference will be held on January 5th, 6th and 7th, 2012 at the Fulkerson Conference Center on the Missouri Western State University Campus in St. Joseph, Missouri.

"Interesting and useful information will be presented on production and marketing of vegetables, cut flowers and fruit," said Mercedes Taylor-Puckett, Farmers Market and Local Food Coordinator for the Kansas Rural Center. "It doesn't matter if you are an experienced commercial vegetable grower or someone with just a dream about starting to grow and sell produce, there will be something for you," she said.

The conference and trade show is a collaborative effort of growers associations and extension services from Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and South Dakota, and each year draws hundreds of producers from our region and beyond.

On Thursday January 5th, the conference kicks off with five day-long workshops that you can choose from:

High Tunnels - Essential Tools for the Market Farmer Speakers: Paul & Sandy Arnold, Mike Bollinger, Matthew Kleinhenz, Paul Duffner, Bill Warner, & Dan Kuebler.

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Minischool Speakers: Chris McGuire, Liz Graznak, Rebecca Graff, and Tom Ruggierri.

GAP/ Food Safety Speakers: Chris Blanchard and David Markwardt.

Fruit Growers Tree Fruit Workshop I: Speakers: Wayne Mitchem, Wanda Gale, Keith Yoder

The Basics of Beekeeping in the Midwest Speakers: Jim & Valerie Duever

Five concurrent sessions on Friday and Saturday January 6th and 7th will provide a total of over 50 presentations on a wealth of subjects related to organic and conventional crop production, protection, risk management and marketing. In addition to presentations on vegetable production and marketing, there will be tracks on small fruit, tree fruit, cut flowers, beginner and advanced organic, marketing, agritourism and sessions on urban horticulture and community gardens.

Registration, which includes meals and breaks, for the Thursday workshops is $50 -$60 depending on the workshop selected and $35/day for Friday and Saturday sessions.

The conference will be held at the Fulkerson Conference Center on the Missouri Western State University campus in St. Joseph, MO. The headquarter hotels are the Ramada Inn, 4016 Frederick, 816-233-6192 or Stoney Creek Inn, 1201 Woodbine 816-901-9600.

A full program, registration information and updated details of the conference can be found at the conference website: http://www.great for more information about the program and a registration form, contact Katie Cook at or phone (816) 279-1691.

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