Webinar Schedule and Participant Guide
In 2023, this course will be offered live for 6-weeks on Wednesdays from 6:30 – 8:00 PM (Eastern) from November 1 – December 6. While we encourage live attendance, so you have the opportunity to engage with presenters and ask questions, all webinars are recorded and posted in the online classroom to watch anytime. You will also retain access to all materials indefinitely, and can return to participate in the live webinars in future offerings of the course if you wish. Please mark these dates and times in your calendar and join us!
To access the webinars, please to click on the webinar join link that is posted in each week of the course. This link only works on the appointed day and time for that webinar, so while you can try clicking it sooner, it won't open the webinar meeting for you. You may also join our webinars from a mobile device by installing the Zoom app. Then, along with the webinar join link each week, we'll post the meeting ID. This is a 9-digit number you would need to enter in your Zoom app to join the live session with us.
Week 1: Getting Started with Pigs
Topics covered: Like all of these presentations, this is a discussion, not a lecture, so participation is highly encouraged. In this first installment, we will go over the basics of raising pigs and what you will need to get started and to be successful with these unique animals.
Week 2: Pastured Pigs Perils and Pitfalls
Topics covered: Drawing on the experiences of many that have come before us we will review the most common mistakes that growers make when transitioning to or designing their outdoor pig production system.
Week 3: Health & Nutrition
Topics covered: This module will address pig nutritional needs, feeding strategies, and types of feed and then go on to discuss some common problems and ailments that affect pigs, including treatment options. We will briefly discuss how to keep pigs healthy through all seasons, and health of pregnant/farrowing sows and new piglets.
Week 4: Sales and Marketing Part 1
Topics covered: Long before your pigs are ready to go to market you will need to determine how/where you will have them processed and what you want to do with the resulting products. We will discuss the pros/cons of selling via live animal, wholesale, freezer trade (whole/halves), retail cuts and next level processed (charcuterie, smoked meats, etc). This module will review the NYS laws regarding processing pigs, USDA rules and regulations and custom labeling.
Week 5: Sales and Marketing Part 2
Topics covered: Now that you have your product, how and where are you going to sell it? We will discuss strategies for determining your client/market base, where to reach that market, and how to tell your farm story. We will briefly discuss marketing and promotional strategies, branding, website options, and social media management.
Week 5: Case Studies / Putting it all Together
Topics covered: In this final class we will look at some examples of farmers who are raising pastured pigs via video and live conversations. These producers will help us understand why they got into (or out of) the business of pigs, what has worked best for them, and what the future may hold for this type of business. We will leave time for final questions! The live presenter will be Devon Van Noble of Van Noble Farm (https://vannoblefarm.com/)
Webinar Participants' Guide
The attached PDF explains a basic overview of how our class meetings will work via Zoom. We will allow a few extra minutes in the first week to ensure that everyone can get connected and get their settings arranged correctly. Please don't hesitate to speak up if you are having difficulties and we will help you troubleshoot.