MANHATTAN, KANSAS, U.S. — The annual Grain Purchasing course at the International Grains Program (IGP) Conference Center was April 8-19. The two-part course took place with the first week covering the critical elements of grain purchasing and constructing contracts. The second week went into deeper details of purchasing strategies and price risk management.

Presentations included experiences from industry professionals with interactive activities and discussions. The first week focused on contracting, transportation and logistics, and gave participants the opportunity to network and learn from each other.

“The range of presentations we featured in this course helped create a great learning environment where participants had the opportunity to expand their understanding of grain purchasing through discussion and interactive activities,” said Jay O’Neil, course coordinator and IGP senior agricultural economist. “Presentations provided grain buyers and traders with the tools needed to ensure product quality, while managing price risk and contract integrity.”

Between the two weeks, the course participants had the opportunity to join an optional field trip to the Port of Kalama, Washington, U.S., a major export terminal. While there, they were able to see firsthand how the export system in the U.S. operates.

To finish out the program, the second week focused on hedging techniques and risk management. Along with O’Neil, the course highlighted industry and academic presenters with experience in grain trading challenges.

An international sales manager from Venezuela was impressed with the content of this course and looks forward to attending other courses in the future. Federico Gonzalez said he had most of his questions answered and has a better understanding of how to improve his purchasing strategies.

Having attended several other courses, Gonzalez said this one was the best one yet. He explained that the progression of the course was excellent and being able to see the theory and the practice of trading made for an even better experience.