Growing up on a farm cultivated Hunter Biram’s passion for agriculture. His ambitions put him on a path where he could use his skills and passion to serve Arkansas farmers and ensure their success.
Biram’s agriculture journey began on his family farm in Floral, Arkansas, where his family raised animals and had a peach orchard. His experience growing up on that farm was vital to an undergraduate speech he gave which resulted in a professor recruiting him to study agribusiness.
“Our family farm achieved century farm status a few years ago,” Biram said. “To be able to help farmers today get that status or maintain that legacy, that’s critical and core to what I do.”
Biram attended Arkansas State University, Mississippi State University and Kansas State University, where he completed his academic career with a Ph.D. in agricultural economics. Many of his professors encouraged and mentored him to fulfill his dreams. He now works for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture as an extension agriculture economist and assistant professor.
As an extension agricultural economist, Biram advises and educates farmers about crop insurance that will best fit their needs, what is going on in the crop markets, and what to expect on a policy level. His goal is to provide farmers with objective information that will help them manage, mitigate and minimize the risks to their farms and crops. He does this by meeting with farmers one-on-one and in large classes. In both instances, he communicates key findings from new research to help farmers make informed decisions and creates reports that explain the impact of current events and help farmers navigate tough times.
“My favorite part about my job is just being with farmers,” said Biram.
Biram says there are specific skills needed to advise farmers with these important decisions. As his job requires using models and equations, mathematical thinking and the ability to use a computer are needed skills. Above all, though, people skills are a necessity. With people skills, farmers will hear and trust what they are told.
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