Managing risk is something we do on a daily basis from choosing the clothes we wear to where to invest money, but speakers at this year’s Midland Agricultural Association Forum want farmers to look at both sides of the risk coin.
Risk is the topic for the Campbell Town Show forum on Friday, with panel speakers Robert Herrmann from Ag Concepts Advisory/Mecardo, Rabobank’s Daker Pern, Dr David Stephens from Agrometeorology Australian and Peter Wilkinson at Achmea looking how how it can be managed.
Mr Herrmann said his business studied the markets and analysed data to forecast future risk, but also pinpoint possible opportunities.
“We use data and our experience to advise clients on strategies to manage risk, but the flip side of that is understanding risk at times highlights opportunities,” Mr Herrmann said.
Farmers who operate mixed businesses should not consider each commodity separately, but rather look at the business as a whole, Mr Herrmann said.
“For example, if wheat is selling well, but wool is not getting so much, you might forward sell the wheat and store the wool,” Mr Herrmann said.
“Everybody thinks it is complicated, but we see risk management policies as similar to crop protection policies. In business we cater to each unique strategy, but the underpinning circumstances are the same.
“The most important thing is applying information and knowledge to making those decisions. Your underlying knowledge helps form your view on managing risk,” he said.
Another risk example Mr Herrmann outlined as a potential opportunity was when the cattle market became depressed in October 2014.
“That created an opportunity for people who had the ability to keep some of their cattle and not sell. You can take a position based on that,” he said.
Mr Herrmann’s fellow panel members will also talk about risks and opportunities associated with managing finances, climate and crop forecasts and insurance.
The Midland Agricultural Association Forum is at 1.30pm on Friday in the Clarke Hall, Campbell Town.
Billed as the Southern Hemisphere’s longest continually-running agricultural show, and listed by National Trust in Tasmania’s living history, the Campbell Town Show focuses on rural work and lifestyle.
Campbell Town Show is on Friday and Saturday at the showgrounds between 7.20am and 5pm.
Entry is $10 for adults and $5 children.
For more information visit www.campbelltownshow.com.au