144. No barley, no beer: Why the U.S. needs to support growers to keep raising malting barley

Steven Edwardson (1), Greg Kessel (1); (1) North Dakota Barley Council, West Fargo, ND, U.S.A.

Malt and Grains
Poster

Barley production in the United States has declined at a rate of 310,000 acres per year since the mid-1980s. While production seems to have stabilized in the area of 2.5 million to 3.0 million acres per year over the past five years, barley growers have numerous opportunities to produce other crops. This presentation explores the transition of barley from a commodity crop to a specialty crop produced under contract, and outlines the components of risk and profitability that growers utilize in developing cropping plans that include barley and competing crops. The importance of maintaining a stable supply of U. S. malting barley production is also addressed.

Steven Edwardson serves as executive administrator of the North Dakota Barley Council, a position which he has held since April 2004. Steve and the North Dakota Barley Council directors work together in developing markets for barley in malting, human food, and livestock applications. Alliances with the U.S. Grains Council, universities, and barley suppliers collectively assist in a balanced market development program. Steve has experience in international trade and has conducted business in Japan, Taiwan, Argentina, Germany, and the United Kingdom. He has implemented educational programs in specialty crop contracting and supply chain management, crop enterprise selection, and market intelligence. Steve served for 12 years as vice president of research and development for Minn-Dak Growers Ltd., a specialty crop company in Grand Forks, ND. He also served as a commercial manager for Kings Inc. (formerly a division of Associated British Foods) and as a farm management specialist for the North Dakota State University Extension Service. Steve holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in agricultural mechanization from the Department of Agricultural Engineering at North Dakota State University. Steve was raised on a small-grains farm near Carrington, ND.