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National Conference for Food and Agribusiness 2017

November 7-8, 2017


Program Overview

The center has conducted five major studies of commercial producers' buying behaviors over the past 25 years. The sixth iteration of the study is implementing now and the results will be presented at the National Conference for Agribusiness: Large Commercial Producer Project in November 2017.

The project’s objective is to understand the preferences of large-scale producers when interacting with agricultural salespeople, retailers, lenders and manufacturers. The Large Commercial Producer survey focuses on corn/soybean, wheat/barley, cotton, fruit/nut/vegetables, dairy, hog and cattle producers across the United States.

Program Content

Producer Strategies

Learn how producers choose to win in the market place. What are their business strategies? What factors (price/marketing, production, people, land and equipment, input costs) drive their strategies? How much time do farmers spend on decision-making based on their strategies? The results will help the agribusiness to understand how they provide the right mix in a customer's buying process.

Information and Salesperson Preferences

Gain a deeper understanding of farmer preferences when it comes to their information sources. Learn what sources are the most common and trusted, and what methods they prefer to receive information. The results help identify how farmer view information sources and how important their sources are in the producer decision-making processes. Farmer perspectives will be provided, enabling agribusinesses to identify how they allocate their resources, people and messages.

Procurement Processes

Explore the steps farmers take to procure farm inputs and discover their procurement perception. Our hypothesis is that not many farmers have analytical procurement processes to make buying decisions. We will investigate how diligent farmers are in comparing their suppliers, how analytical they are in their decision-making, how familiar they are with written bid sheets and how often they use them. The results will help salespeople understand:

  • Customer priorities on procurement lists
  • Terms of engagement and how to address them with customers
  • Creating more value with customers
  • Focusing discussions with customers on more than just price (e.g. performance)

Buying Preferences

The goal is to acquire deeper insight into farmer buying behavior. Investigate the impact of factors such as price, quality of service and relationship/trust on farmer preferences and how these convert to loyalty. Buying preferences are the pillar of the conference. Agribusinesses will:

  • Understand where the potential tradeoffs might be for their customers
  • Tailor sales approaches to segments of farmers to improve success rate
  • Identify where salespeople can be most effective
  • Consider opportunities for more cross-selling within their product and service offerings

Risk Management

To elicit general farmer attitudes about various risks they face, such as: production, marketing, financial, legal and human risks. Understand the areas of risk that agricultural producers find most important when managing their farm business. Essentially, the result is intended to be the relative ranking of risk areas by producers with varying identifiable characteristics.

This information will be beneficial to agribusinesses by helping them better understand their customers and their attitudes towards the many risks they face. In turn, this will allow agribusinesses to tailor their products and services to better serve their farm customers.


Program Dates

November 7-8, 2017


Purdue University
West Lafayette, Ind.

Registration Fee

$1,195/person (early bird, through Aug. 31)
$1,395/person (after Aug. 31)

Is this workshop for you?

For more information and group rates, please call:
Masi Keshavarz

Educational Credit

You can earn CEU and CCA credit at this program.

Registration fees include all program materials, refreshments and some meals. Registrations are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Once the program is full, names will be added to a waiting list in the order in which they are received. Registration fees are due upon receipt of registration. Read the cancellation policy.