Learn Strategies to Protect Agriculture in Your State

Stakeholder summit deadline approaching. 


April 11, 2011- The early registration deadline for the Animal Agriculture Alliance’s Tenth Annual Stakeholders Summit is fast approaching. On May 5-6, leaders from the food and farm sectors will meet in Arlington, Virginia to discuss ways to protect and grow the livestock industry in the future. Featuring presentations from more than 16 industry experts, the 2011 Summit promises to be a can’t-miss event!

The Summit’s theme, “United We Eat: Securing Animal Agriculture’s Future” will help attendees understand opportunities for the industry to overcome the challenges it faces while feeding a growing population. A full 100 percent of 2010 Summit attendees rated the program “excellent” or “good.” This year, moderator Jason Shoultz of America’s Heartland will provide insight into how farmers and ranchers can overcome the urban/rural divide to share their stories with consumers. The Summit’s program is available at http://www.animalagalliance.org/register.

The event will include a highly-anticipated panel discussion on protecting agriculture at the state level amidst activist conflict. It will include insight from three leaders from the battleground states of Nebraska, Missouri, and Ohio. Panelists include:

  • Senator Tom Carlson was elected to the Nebraska Unicameral in November, 2006 and represents Nebraska’s 38th Legislative District. He currently serves as Chairman of the Agriculture Committee and is also a member of the Natural Resources Committee, Business and Labor Committee, and the Committee on Committees.
    • He was born on the family farm in 1941 in Holdrege, NE and graduated from the University of Northern Colorado with a B. S. degree in 1963 and a M.S. degree 1964. Senator Carlson received his PhD from the University of Iowa in 1967.
  • Kelly Smith is the Director of Marketing and Commodities for Missouri Farm Bureau. He is a member of MFB’s legislative team, serves as Farm Bureau’s
    liaison to state commodity organizations and merchandising councils, is the staff advisor to the 9th District Farm PAC, and provides market information to
    members via MFB’s website and in outlook meetings across the state.

    • Kelly is an active advocate for animal agriculture and spends much of his time educating farmers and the public on the true agenda of animal activist organizations. Smith grew up on a hog, cattle, sheep and row crop farm in northeast Missouri. He a graduate of the University of Missouri and holds a BS degree in Agricultural Economics.
  • Director James Zehringer was formally appointed Ohio Agriculture Director by Governor John Kasich on January 10, 2011. He is the former owner and operator of the Meiring Poultry and Fish Farm, which received several awards for outstanding environmental practices under his management.
    • Most recently Director Zehringer served as State Representative for the 77th House District. He previously served as a Mercer County Commissioner from 2002 to 2007. Food and agriculture is the No. 1 industry in Ohio, adding more than $98 billion to the economy each year. In addition to providing leadership for the agricultural industry, the director of agriculture administers numerous regulatory, food safety, and consumer protection programs for the benefit of all Ohioans.

A brand-new farm security workshop- “Protecting Your Business From the Inside Out” – will be held on May 6 at the conclusion of the Summit to help food industry leaders protect their businesses from activist threats. The discussion will include presentations law enforcement security specialists and case studies from producers who have been targeted. Attendees will learn how to identify potential “undercover” employees and strategies to improve crisis management by building relationships with community members and local media. Agriculture media leaders from Feedstuffs Foodlink will share suggestions to help farmers and ranchers interact with reporters. The workshop is being offered for a fee of $50 and registration materials are available on the Alliance’s website.

The Summit will be held at The Westin Arlington Gateway hotel in Arlington, Virginia. Attendees should book rooms in the “Animal Agriculture Alliance” block at the special rate of $239 by visiting the hotel’s website or by calling (703) 717-6200. Early registration for the one-and-a-half day event is $325 for Alliance members and $375 for non-members. The Alliance is offering a special rate of $275 for those in government or academia. Registration materials are available
online at www.animalagalliance.org/register. Early hotel and conference registration are due by April 16.

Event sponsors currently include Vance Publishing’s Food 360° Group, U.S. Poultry and Egg Association, Murphy-Brown, Provimi North America, Cargill, Tyson Foods, Pfizer Animal Health Hy-Line, American Feed Industry Association, American Veal Association, Bayer Animal Health, Monsanto, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, National Pork Board, National Pork Producers’ Council, Potash Corporation, Watt Agribusiness Media, Cactus Feeders, Brakke Consulting, Kemin Industries, and TruffleMedia Networks.

All registration materials must be submitted in advance of the conference. On-site registration will not be available. For additional Summit information, visit
http://www.animalagalliance.org/register or contact the Alliance at (703) 562-5160 or summit@animalagalliance.org. Media inquiries should be directed to Sarah Hubbart, Communications Director, at shubbart@animalagalliance.org.

About the Alliance:
The Animal Agriculture Alliance is an industry-united, nonprofit organization that helps bridge the communication gap between farm and fork. We connect key food industry stakeholders to arm them with responses to emerging issues. We engage food chain influencers and promote consumer choice by helping them better understand modern animal agriculture. We protect by exposing those who threaten our nation’s food security with damaging misinformation. Find the Alliance on Facebook and Twitter.

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