Southwest Missouri Spring Forage Conference set for Feb. 23 and 24

The 37th annual Southwest Missouri Spring Forage Conference will be held Feb. 23 and 24. The conference will be virtual in 2021 with pre-registration required by Feb. 16.

The sessions will run from 8 a.m. to 2:15 p.m. each day. Conference login begins at 7:30 a.m. Registered participants can enter or exit the conference as they want. After the conference, recorded sessions will be available to participants until March 24. Participants can watch from home or watch parties are being set up to allow multiple participants in one location. Locations will be listed on the conference’s website.

This year’s keynote speaker will be Peter Ballerstedt, forage ambassador for Barenburg USA. Ballerstedt has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Georgia and a doctorate from the University of Kentucky. He was the forage extension specialist at Oregon State University from 1986 to 1992. The title of his keynote address on the first day is: Red Meat and Our Health: Separating Scientific Fact from Politics, Emotion, and Misinformation.

Along with the keynote topic on the first day, 13 other 45-minute sessions will be held throughout the two-day event. Topics include: beef cattle markets, Missouri climate trends, year-round pasture management, matching cow size to forage resource, small ruminant pasture management, clover and nitrogen fertilizer management, strip grazing milo, bale grazing, managing the grazing system in the winter months, annual forages for livestock production, warm season grasses testing and performance, and forage pest issues.

Agricultural businesses and organizations will have commercial displays and logo representation before and between sessions. For more information on becoming a sponsor or exhibitor during this virtual event, visit the website or contact Nathan Witt at 417-451-1007, ext.3.

The cost is $45 per person. Mail in registrations must be received by February 16th to assure access to the conference. Participants can find more information about the conference and register online at Contact the Laclede County SWCD office at 417-532-6305, ext.101 for additional questions.