September 29, 2016 | By: Katie Pratt
Lexington, Ky.

Participants attending the 2016 Kentucky Grazing Conference will learn new and innovative ways to think about their pastures and improve their operation.

The conference is from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. EDT Oct. 19 at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset.  It is sponsored by the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and the Kentucky Forage and Grassland Council.

Among the presenters is Peter Byck, a journalism professor at Arizona State University. He will discuss how soil health can lead to increased farm income. Byck has produced and directed several short films with U.S. forage and livestock producers who have implemented pasture improvements on their farms. These improvements not only increased pasture productivity, but also improved the health and livelihood of their animals, their community and themselves.

Additional topics include pasture-based beef finishing, marketing grass-fed beef, cutting-edge grazing research and a farmer success story with the Natural Resources Conservation Service cost-share programs. Presenters include individuals from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forage-Animal Production Research Unit, UK Department of Agricultural Economics, NRCS offices in Kentucky and Tennessee and a Kentucky USDA-certified grass-fed beef producer.

 The afternoon session will feature the annual Kentucky Forage Spokesman Contest with the winner advancing to the national contest held in January during the American Forage and Grassland Council annual meeting. Winners of Kentucky’s contest have been very competitive on the national stage with more national winners than any other state.

Conference registration is $20 and $10 for students. Additional information and online registration is available on the UK Forage Extension website at


Ray Smith, 859-257-3358;