National Value-Added Agriculture Conference May 18-20 in Austin

Writer: Blair Fannin, 979-845-2259,  b-fannin@tamu.edu

AUSTIN – The 17th National Value-Added Agriculture Conference is scheduled for May 18-20 at the Austin Marriott South, 4415 South Interstate 35 in Austin.

The conference is hosted by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and the department of agricultural economics at Texas A&M University.

The theme of the conference is “The Future of the U.S. Food System: Providing Nutritious, Sustainable, and Healthy Food for All Americans.”

“This conference is held every year in a different state in the United States to address food security, rural development, and value added agriculture,” said Trang Dang, postdoctoral research associate in agricultural economics at Texas A&M, College Station. “Approximately 150 participants will attend. This year, the conference is working toward the future of the U.S food systems, on the goal of providing enough nutritious, sustainable, and healthy foods for the U.S consumers.”

Carlos Rubinstein, chairman of the Texas Water Development Board, is one of several scheduled speakers at the 2015 National Value-Added Agriculture Conference May 18-20 in Austin. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo by Blair Fannin)

Carlos Rubinstein, chairman of the Texas Water Development Board, is one of several scheduled speakers at the 2015 National Value-Added Agriculture Conference May 18-20 in Austin. (Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service photo by Blair Fannin)

Speakers at this year’s conference will include Neilson C. Conklin, president of the Farm Foundation,who will present their The Dialogue for Food and Agriculture in the 21st Century project; Carlos Rubinstein, chairman of Texas Water Management Board; Francisco Valentin, state director, U.S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development, Judith Canales, U.S. Department of Agriculture-Farm Service Agency Texas state executive director, and many other economists, researchers, farmers, producers and policy makers.

Dang said conference participants will also have the opportunities to visit U.S Foods’ Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-certified facility in Buda and Whole Foods flagship store in Austin, and tour two urban farms in Austin: Agua Dulce Farm and Springdale farm.

Deadline for registration is 5 p.m. April 27. Registration fee is $200, which will cover meetings, two breakfasts, two lunches, three coffee breaks, a reception, and a banquet.

American Farm Bureau Federation, National Food MarketMaker, Southern Rural Development Center, Southern Extension Risk Management Education, AgriLife Extension and the Agricultural Marketing Resource Center are confirmed sponsors for the conference.

For more information about the conference and conference registration, visit http://bit.ly/1F26B2Xce/ .


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