University of Missouri Extension

Eileen Yager
Communications Officer

Published: October 30, 2008
Story Source: Joe Horner, (573) 882-9339

MU Extension honors Horner for work with state’s dairy industry

COLUMBIA, Mo. - Joe Horner, University of Missouri Extension agricultural economist, received the MU Vice Provost's Award for Outstanding Achievement, Oct. 30, for his work with the state's dairy industry.

The number of Missouri dairies declined by 50 percent over 15 years before seeing a resurgence starting in 2004. Horner has provided tools in business planning, economic modeling and financing that has been a key to the industry's growth. Since 2004, dairy producers have invested more than $100 million in pasture-based dairies and added 20,000 dairy cows. By the end of 2008, those investments will generate $28 million in annual milk sales and create 777 jobs.

The Missouri Dairyman's Resource Guide provides producers with practical, up-to-date information via the Web. The site averages 3,800 visits per month. Horner recently developed a similar product for beef producers, bringing together faculty from ag economics and plant, food and animal sciences to develop a Web site that is quickly becoming popular.

Horner also has been involved in several research projects, including "Employment and Economic Benefits of Ethanol Production in Missouri" and two related projects, the "Missouri 700-Cow and 3,000-Cow Dairy Model" and the "Missouri 700-Cow and 3,000-Cow Model Allied with a Nearby Ethanol Plant." Another report, "Production, Marketing and Incentive Programs for Missouri Farmers and Ranchers to Improve Grassland Bird Habitat," has been well-received in the conservation community.

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