Barley Checkoff Dollars at Work!

Risk Management Education

Crop Insurance

Developing a Grain Marketing Plan

Materials developed jointly by the Idaho Barley Commission (Cori Wittman and Kelly Olson) and University of Idaho Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology (Paul Patterson and Larry Makus), December 2004.

Elements of Market Plan Development

  • Market Plan - Know Your Cost of Production
  • Understand the Market
  • Understand the Marketing Alternatives
  • Develop Market Price and Date Objectives
  • Test the Plan
  • Evaluate Plan Effectiveness


Planning helps manage risk associated with uncertainty.

The importance of WRITING DOWN a marketing plan

Having a written plan increases the discipline used to follow the written strategy. It also provides a way in which producers may assess the logic, accuracy, and effectiveness of marketing decisions at the year’s end.

Factors to consider

Throughout the development of a marketing plan, the following factors must be considered:

  • Financial goals
  • Cash flow needs
  • Price objectives
  • Anticipated production
  • Crop insurance
  • Appetite for risk
  • Storage capacity

A marketing plan works only if it fits your operation, your goals, your objectives, and your financial situation.

Material was gathered from the following sources:

  • Larry D. Makus and Paul E. Patterson, Ag Economists, University of Idaho
  • Randy Neiwirth, Great Western Malting Co., Blackfoot, ID; and Craig Corbett, barley producers, Grace, ID, risk management advisors to the Idaho Barley Commission
  • R.L. Wittman, farmer and owner Wittman Consulting, Culdesac, ID
  • Keith Schumacher, grain trader, Primeland Cooperative
  • "The Road to Marketing Success" ppt., by Edward C. Usset and Bob Craven
  • John Berry, Penn State Cooperative Extension
  • Iowa Soybean Association, A Farmer Guide to Revenue Management & Marketing