The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation’s Agricultural Division and Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service will host the 18th Annual Southern Plains Beef Symposium from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 9, at the Ardmore Convention Center in Ardmore, Okla.

Entitled Coping with the Times, Higher Cost and Tighter Margins, this year’s symposium brings together four speakers from Oklahoma and Missouri, who will discuss how they and other farmers and ranchers are coping with the challenges of increased input costs related to the higher cost of energy.

“The Southern Plains Beef Symposium is an excellent one day event for beef producers to gain insight and information into current issue and production situations,” said Shan Ingram, the Noble Foundation’s Education and Special Projects Manager. “We are fortunate to have good sponsors and partners who help with the symposium, which allow us to bring a quality, national-level program to our agricultural producers.”

The four speakers are:

  • Bob Woods, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service Area Agronomy Specialist from Muskogee, Okla. In January 2008, he received the Distinguished Educator Award. He has 32 years experience providing quality information on technical research data and turning it into practical recommendations for producers.
  • Job Springer, agricultural economist with the Noble Foundation, works closely with producers to help them achieve their agricultural economic goals. His specialties include analysis of farm taxation, livestock marketing, financial budgets and strategic planning.
  • Yates Adcock, ranch manager for Middle Creek Ranch in Dustin, Okla. In 2007, Adcock won the Leonard Wyatt Outstanding Cooperator Award, a prestigious award given by the Noble Foundation. Yates received the Leonard Wyatt award because of Yates long-standing reputation for seeking innovative livestock business practices.
  • Scott Brown, program director for the Food and Agriculture Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) at the University of Missouri, provides U.S. Congress with analysis of livestock and dairy policy changes and has testified before the House and Senate. FAPRI was recognized by the United States Department of Agriculture for the analysis conducted for the 2002 farm bill.

Along with the speakers, there will be an afternoon panel discussion. Panelists include: Jack Cunningham, Cunningham Ranch, Springer; Terry Stuart Forst, Stuart Ranch, Waurika; Jim Howard, Howard Cattle Company, Ringling; and Steve Jones, Sooner J. Ranch, Rush Springs. The assembled panelists have vast backgrounds and extensive experience in the beef industry. They will highlight their operations and relay how they are coping with the high energy costs as well as other challenges, followed by a question-and-answer session with symposium attendees.

The Noble Foundation’s Leonard Wyatt Distinguished Cooperator of the Year Award will be presented at the symposium as well. The award honors the best of the Agricultural Division’s 1,500 farmers and ranchers, who work in conjunction with the Noble Foundation’s agricultural consultants. The symposium also will feature a trade show, which will showcase more than 40 booths.

Registration for the symposium costs $25 per person ($30 at the door) and includes the entire program and a prime rib lunch. For additional information or to register, contact Tracy Cumbie at 580.224.6411 or by e-mail at tlcumbie@noble.org.