Published Nov 16, 2023

Registration Now Open for Practical Farmers of Iowa’s 2024 Annual Conference

By Elizabeth Wilhelm
Conference features more than 60 farmer-led sessions, keynote from cover crop pioneer Keith Berns

Elizabeth Wilhelm | Media Relations Coordinator | (515) 232-5661 |

AMES, Iowa (Nov. 16, 2023) — Practical Farmers of Iowa invites all farmers, landowners and friends of farmers to come together for two days of learning and networking at the PFI 2024 Annual Conference, taking place Jan. 19-20 at the Iowa Events Center in downtown Des Moines, Iowa. Registration for the conference – one of PFI’s longest-running and most popular farmer-led events – is now open.

“I’ve been thrilled to see the growing interest in our annual conference,” says Liz Kolbe, PFI’s farmer-led education director. “Last year, we had a record-breaking crowd with over 1,000 farmers, landowners and friends of farmers who gathered to learn and discuss what matters most to them. We’re excited to move to a bigger space in Des Moines where we can provide attendees an even better experience.”

Since PFI’s founding, the annual conference has been a keystone event for thousands of farmers to share knowledge, build connections and celebrate agriculture in Iowa. Attendees can look forward to 60-plus sessions and 80-plus exhibitors covering a range of agricultural topics, along with locally sourced snacks and meals throughout the conference.

New this year, PFI is offering a full track of Spanish-language sessions. “This will be a valuable networking and info-sharing event for Spanish speakers who farm, raise animals or are interested in growing food,” says Valeria Cano-Camacho, PFI’s Latino engagement coordinator.

Additional conference highlights:

  • A Friday keynote by Keith Berns, one of the cover crop pioneers over the past 15 years. Keith will lay out the case for how soil health practices affect the bottom-line profitability of a farming operation.
  • Session topics that span the agricultural spectrum, including conventional and organic field crop systems, livestock, fruit and vegetable production, conservation, on-farm habitat, urban farming, business planning, beginning farmers, farmland ownership and more.
  • Three optional pre-conference short courses: “Grazing Intensive With Greg Judy”; “Soil Health and Fertility for Horticulture Production”; and “Getting Started With Organic Transition.” All courses begin Thursday, Jan. 18 in the afternoon and end the morning of Friday, Jan. 19 before the conference starts.
  • An afternoon of storytelling by PFI farmers sharing skillfully narrated true stories.
    Presentation of PFI’s 2024 Sustainable Agriculture Achievement Award.

Long-time conference attendee Hannah Breckbill, who operates Humble Hands Harvest in Decorah, Iowa, finds the connections she makes to be her favorite part of the conference. “The people and network are what I love most,” she says.

Those who register by Dec. 8 will be entered in a drawing to win two free nights at the Hilton Des Moines Downtown hotel during the conference. PFI strives to keep the conference affordable for attendees and offers special rates for members and students.

To register and for pricing details, visit For questions about the conference, or help registering, please call the office at (515) 232-5661.

For full conference details, visit

Practical Farmers of Iowa’s 2024 Annual Conference is supported by several major sponsors, including: ADM re:generations; Grain Millers Inc.; Niman Ranch; Sunderman Farm Management Co.; and Choose Iowa | Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship.


About Practical Farmers: Practical Farmers of Iowa is a nonprofit with more than 6,000 members that equips farmers to build resilient farms and communities. We create learning opportunities via farmer-led events, on-farm research and educational content through our robust network of farmers. We also provide funding and technical assistance to help farmers adopt regenerative farming practices and grow farm businesses. Our vision is an Iowa with healthy soil, healthy food, clean air, clean water, resilient farms and vibrant communities. To learn more, visit