The impact of COVID-19 has affected U.S. residents near and far, whether urban or rural. Farmers are no exception, and the University of Missouri Extension and Missouri’s Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) have started working together to help farmers facing challenge.
MU Extension and SBDC are offering business support to farmers who have fallen into hard times as a result of COVID-19, working closely with them to find solutions to their problems.
David Steffes, director of the center’s agricultural business services, tells Brownfield they want farmers to know they are here to help them, reports Brownfield Ag News.
“Your operation is just as much of a business as any of the shops you see in a downtown area or a main street in rural America so we are here to help you find a way to continue to be successful,” Steffes said.
Steffes says they can offer farmers counseling through the cash flow process which is extremely important in light of low commodity prices and they can offer export assistance.
Mallory Rahe, MU Extension educational director of Ag Business Policy, said there are things that can be done including bringing more value-added processing to the state.
“There are producers who could be diversifying what they’re growing and the markets they’re targeting and we can help people get there,” Rahe said.