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USDA Awards $4.8 Million in Risk Management Education Grants to 13 States

Alisa Harrison (202) 720-4623
Maria Bynum (202) 720-5192

WASHINGTON, Nov. 21, 2001-The Agriculture Department announced today that it has awarded $4.8 million in grants to carry out a comprehensive risk management education program for agricultural producers in the United States.

"Managing risk is critical to the success of our farmers and ranchers," said Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman. "These grants will provide training to help producers enhance risk management skills they need to thrive in today's marketplace."

Proposals were accepted from public and private entities including colleges and universities; Federal, State, and local agencies; non-profit and for-profit organizations; and others. All grants were competitive and awarded based on merit

USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service and Risk Management Agency collaborate regularly on risk management education programs. Funding for this program came from the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation fund, managed by the Risk Management Agency.

The grant awards are as follows:

COLORADO --Colorado State University, Fort Collins, $99,180- This project will develop an internet risk management education program based on a "simulation game." The simulation provides many "teachable moments" and allows coverage of more risk management topics including risk faced by livestock producers.

DELAWARE--University of Delaware, Newark, $647,286 - The Northeast Region Risk Management Education Center at the University of Delaware will allocate funds to cooperators in each state in this region to permit timely implementation of the program. This will be followed by a solicitation of proposals for additional projects that will be selected for funding on a competitive basis by a Regional Advisory Committee.

ILLINOIS--University of Illinois, Urbana, $75,000 - This project will provide farmers with the tools needed to evaluate the impact of newer crop marketing contracts and crop insurance risk management products.

IOWA--Iowa Soybean Association, Urbandale, $100,000 - This grant will offer Midwest farmers individual analysis of risk exposures as well as advice on assembling a balanced package of tools and techniques to best address their needs.

MICHIGAN--Michigan State University, East Lansing, $21,000 - The goal of this project is to develop educational materials that help farmers recognize their common, systematic biases that impede them from making sound farm management decisions.

MINNESOTA --University of Minnesota, St. Paul, $175,000 - This project will improve producers' access to risk management education material by supporting and expanding the role of the National Ag Risk Education Library.

NEBRASKA --University of Nebraska, Lincoln, $962,868 - The North Central Regional Risk Management Education Center is located at the University of Nebraska. It is now identifying educational needs in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas. Direct grants are being awarded to each of t07/25/2007ent competitive grants program will encourage collaboration among public and private agencies and organizations involved in risk management education. $100,000 - This project will establish a national resource center for women in agriculture and thus increase the opportunities for farm and ranch women to gain knowledge and skills in all aspects of business management, including risk management.

NORTH CAROLINA --North Carolina State University, Raleigh, $75,000 - This project will design and deliver an educational program reflecting the shift from production agriculture crop insurance needs to personal liability insurance needs.

OHIO--Ohio State University, Columbus, $50,000 - This project develops an internet web site called AgRisk OnLine that will help farmers evaluate different combinations of risk management strategies such as using futures and options; buying crop insurance; or entering into a hog marketing contract.

OKLAHOMA-Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, $60,000 - The project will assist producers in understanding and addressing risk through the development of five resource publications which will be distributed through the National AgRisk Education Library, state risk management coordinators, and the regional risk management education centers.

SOUTH CAROLINA --South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, $75,000 - This grant will be used to form a collaboration with the 1890 Extension programs to develop risk management educational materials that are relevant to the needs of small-scale and limited-resource farmers.

TEXAS --Texas A&M University Research and Extension Center at Stephenville, $1,154,884 - The Risk Management Education Center for the Southern Region resides at Texas A&M University Research and Extension Center at Stephenville and will be expanding its programs into 13 states and Puerto Rico. The programs will address risk encountered in the full range of farm operations with specific projects designed to meet the needs of limited-resource and minority producers.

WASHINGTON --Washington State University, Spokane, $991,679 - The Western Regional Risk Management Education Center operated by Washington State University will coordinate and conduct risk management education programs in Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Washington, Alaska, Oregon, California and Hawaii. Projects will improve the risk management skills of agricultural producers and their families. $182,413 - This project will design and implement a results-based data collection and reporting system on the nature and amount of change in the risk management behavior of farmers, ranchers and their families.