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Office of the Chief Economist
United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Outlook Forum, The Changing Face of Agriculture, February 20-21, 2014, Crystal Gateway Marriott Hotel, Arlington, Virginia

Friday, February 21

8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

TRACK: Rural Development
Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food: The Past, Present, and Future of KYF2
The Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Initiative (KYF2) coordinates USDA’s work on local and regional food systems. How has KYF2 upheld the original vision and how will it continue to do so in the future?
Moderator: Joani Walsh, Deputy Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs, USDA, Washington, DC

Overview of the KYF2 Initiative: History & Accomplishments
This speaker will review the goals and objectives of the KYF2 initiative, how it works, what has been accomplished to date, and what lies ahead in the future.
Elanor Starmer, National Coordinator and Advisor, Local and Regional Food Systems, USDA, Washington, DC
Leveraging USDA Programs for Economic Development through Food Systems
This speaker will discuss how local food systems can use KYF2 and other USDA programs to improve the supply, distribution, and demand for local foods.
Emily Oakley, Interim Director, National Young Farmers Coalition and Co-Owner/Farmer at Three Springs Farm, Oaks, OK

Importance of KYF2 for Rural Economies: A Practical Example
This speaker will discuss how KYF2 and federal-state-local partnerships work together to promote local food production and distribution and will highlight the initiative’s work to grow the local food economy in Appalachia.
Guy Land, Chief of Staff, Appalachian Regional Commission, Washington, DC

Strengthening Rural Communities
Through exciting new partnerships with private and public entities, USDA Rural Development is creating opportunities and delivering resources to strengthen rural economies. This session will showcase how technology is used to help farmers improve crop yield, conserve water and apply environmental monitoring to leverage the agricultural market, as well as meet the challenges of improving access to health care and social services, including a focus on healthcare to veterans.
Moderator: Scott Woods, Senior Communications Program Specialist, Broadband Technology Opportunities Program, National Telecommunications & Information Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, DC

The Role of Precision Farming in Building Stronger Rural Economies
Speaker will discuss how precision farming can benefit both farmers and rural communities through higher crop yields and environment monitoring in rural communities.
Joaquin Silva, Co-Founder and CEO, TerraVu, Carlsbad, CA

Expanding Markets & Creating Job Opportunities
Speaker will look at the delivery of quality, specialized health care to create healthier rural economies, with a focus on care for veterans returning from overseas. 
Gina Capra, Director, Office of Rural Health, Veterans Health Administration, Washington, DC

Improving Access to Education, Healthcare & New Businesses
Speaker will address the role of government and other stakeholders in how expanding access to healthcare can create opportunities and deliver resources that unlock the door to vibrant rural economies.
Leila Samy, Rural Health IT Coordinator, Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, DC


TRACK: Agroforestry, Forests & Citrus 
Agroforestry:  Enriching Lives With Trees
Agroforestry makes it possible to meet multiple objectives on the same parcel of land while at the same time providing a number of social and environmental benefits. The practice of growing crops and trees or livestock is catching among farmers, ranchers, forest owners, and even urban residents that seek greater productivity, profitability, and social and environmental outcomes. This session will explore current agroforestry applications and the latest agroforestry trends. 
Moderator: Wayne Honeycutt, Deputy Chief for Science and Technology, NRCS annnnnd Chair of the Agroforestry Executive Steering Committee, USDA, Washington, DC

Silvopasture: Trees, Livestock, and Forages:  Working Together for Profits & More!
Learn how minority landowners are successfully applying silvopasture in the Southeast with cattle and pine trees, and the future direction of silvopasture in the region.
John Fike, Associate Professor, Crop and Soil Environmental Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA


Hybrid Hazelnuts: A Promising Future Crop for Food, Feed & Bioenergy
Learn about the remarkable capabilities of hybrid hazelnuts and how expanding hazelnut production can advance sustainable energy, wildlife habitat conservation, and human health and well-being.
Scott Josiah, Nebraska State Forester, Nebraska Forest Service, Lincoln, NE


Urban Food Forests: A Growing Trend
Learn about the ‘urban food forest’ movement through an inspiring story of how Baltimore and other U.S. cities are growing orchards that provide local food for residents, conserve open space, and connect the urban population to nature.
Nina Beth Cardin, Founder, Baltimore Orchard Project, Baltimore, MD


TRACK: Nutrition & Food Safety/Local Foods
Outbreak Containment & Emergency Response
When a foodborne illness has broken out, what procedures are in place with public partners, law enforcement, etc.? What role can technology play--such as using social media to alert consumers? What are the limits and challenges of a recall?
Moderator: David Goldman, Assistant Administrator, Office of Public Health Science, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, Washington, DC

David P. Goldman, Captain, USPHS and Assistant Administrator, Office of Public Health Science, Food Safety and Inspection Service, USDA, Washington, DC

Matthew Wise, LCDR, USPHS, and Outbreak Response Team Lead, Outbreak Response and Prevention Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA

Alicia Cronquist, Foodborne and Enteric Disease Epidemiologist, Disease Control and Environmental Epidemiology
Division, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, CO



TRACK: Markets & Weather
Increasing Resilience to Climate Variability
This session will examine the resiliency of agricultural productions systems and how that can stabilize production given annual weather variability and projected climatic change and long- term trends.
Moderator:  Bruce Stein, Director of Climate Change Adaptation, National Wildlife Federation, Reston, VA

Conservation Practices to Increase Resiliency
The relationship of soil carbon, organic matter, water retention and holding capacity and how they increase resiliency to extreme weather events.
Carolyn Olson, Climate Change Program Office, USDA, Washington, DC

Modeling at the Farm Level  
This topic explores the relationship between conservation practices and managing carbon using a predictive tool to help farmers manage Carbon and measure sequestration.
Adam Chambers, Physical Scientist, Air Quality and Atmospheric Change Team, Natural Resources Conservation Service, USDA

Regional Climate Hubs
USDA has proposed a system of regional research, education, and information centers.  This speaker will discuss how this new system will be helpful at the farm level to improve resilience to changing climate.   
William Hohenstein, Director, Climate Change Program Office, USDA, Washington, DC


TRACK: Markets

Moderator: Gopinath Munisamy, Director, Market and Trade Economics Division, Economic Research Service, USDA, Washington, DC

USDA Grains & Oilseeds Outlook
Mark Ash, Economic Research Service, USDA, Washington, DC

Grain Stocks Estimates: Can Anything Explain the Market Surprises of Recent Years?
Scott H. Irwin, Laurence J. Norton Chair of Agricultural Marketing, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL

10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

TRACK: Rural Development
Agriculture Supporting Our Veterans 
USDA has several initiatives that serve veterans and other beginning farmers and ranchers. Discussions will describe how one of these programs has helped returning Veterans interested in the food and agriculture sector.
Moderator: Alexis Taylor, Chief of Staff, Office of the Under Secretary, Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, USDA, Washington, DC

Farming Opportunities
Many veterans who have served our country have challenges transitioning to civilian life and struggle with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and high unemployment rates. Veterans have found solace working on the Archipley’s avocado farm, located on 3 acres outside of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. 
Sergeant Colin and Karen Archipley, Founders of Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training, San Diego, CA

Funding Opportunities
A veteran looks at starting to farm, needed some assistance and through help from the local Farm Service Agency received a micro loan for beginning farmers.
Vonita Murray, Poultry Farmer, Elverta, CA

Entrepreneurial Opportunities
Michael O’Gorman will discuss how his organization helps returning veterans convert their unique shills to farming and agribusiness opportunities.
Michael O’Gorman, Executive Director, Farmer Veteran Coalition, Davis, CA

USDA Employees: Supporting Provincial & Reconstruction Efforts
Rhodes will discuss the role agriculture played while serving in Afghanistan.
Margaret Rhodes, Chief of Staff to Deputy Under Secretary, Washington, DC


TRACK: Agroforestry, Forests & Citrus
Protecting Our Forests
Non-native invasive pests continue to threaten our forests, agriculture, and way of life.  There are many pathways for these organisms, exacerbated by global trade and travel.  Wood packing materials and nursery stock are key issues. The U.S. and many other countries cooperate to prevent and control pests. Phytosanitary measures are essential and there are several examples where they have been successful. This session will provide an overview of the pests, their pathways, phytosanitary measures, and several case studies where they have been applied with varying success.
Moderator: Butch Blazer, Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment, USDA, Washington, DC

Pests and Their Pathways: Phytosanitary Measures Are So Important!
Big Picture presentation highlighting some key forest pests, their pathways, and how non-government and industrial partnerships help government develop and implement effective and efficient phytosanitary measures.
Bill Toomey, Director, Forest Health Programs, The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, VA

Horticultural Industry Partnerships Help Protect Agriculture and Natural Resources - Challenges and Success Stories
What happens in horticulture may not stay there. Focuses on how phytosanitary measures for horticultural plants are key to protecting U.S. agricultural and forestry interests. Look to the future for implementing.
Craig Regelbrugge, Senior Vice President-Industry Advocacy and Research, AmericanHort, Washington, DC

Forest Industry Partnership Helps Prevent the Introduction of Wood Borers – Success Story: Implementing ISPM-15.
Speaker will discuss industry’s role in ensuring that measures developed are practical and can be implemented with minimum impact on trade. He will also look to the future, envisioning participation in developing an international standard for wood products.
John McDaniel, Vice-President, American Lumber Standard Committee, Incorporated, Germantown, MD  


TRACK: Nutrition & Food Safety
Food Dialogues®  
Nutrition: Who’s Shaping America’s Eating Habits?  
The U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance® (USFRA®) is hosting an in-person and live-streamed Food Dialogues® event titled “Nutrition: Who’s Shaping America’s Eating Habits?” at USDA’s Forum.  Join a group of farmers and ranchers, nutritionists and food pundits for a discussion on food production, nutrition and making healthy food choices.

Organic, conventional, locally-grown and natural – these are all terms consumers hear every day, but do they really understand their meaning? Are consumers making informed purchasing decisions or are they simply making food decisions based on what they hear in popular culture and media?
Moderator: Carolyn O'Neill, the author of “Slim Down South Cookbook” and a nutrition advisor to, will moderate a panel that includes:

Dr. Janey Thornton, Deputy Under Secretary, Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services, USDA


  • Craig Rowles – Partner and General Manager, Elite Pork Partnership, LLP, Carroll, IA
  • Dennis Derryck – President and Founder, Corbin Hill Farms, New York, NY
  • Jim Call – Farmer, Call Farms, Madison, MN
  • Roger Clemens – Chief Scientific Officer, Horn and Adjunct Professor of Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences, USC School of Pharmacy, Los Angeles, CA
  • Barbara Ruhs MS, RD, LDN–Supermarket Health & Nutrition Expert, Phoenix, AZ

TRACK: Markets

Moderator: James Hodges, Interim President and CEO, American Meat Institute
Washington, DC

USDA Livestock & Poultry Outlook for 2014
Shayle Shagam, Livestock & Poultry Analyst and ICEC Chair, Office of the Chief Economist, USDA  
Washington, DC

Size Matters! The Economics of Carcass Weights
John S Nalivka, President/Owner, Sterling Marketing, Inc., Vale, OR

Impact of Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDV) on the U.S. Pork Industry
Liz Wagstrom, Chief Veterinarian, National Pork Producers Council



Moderator: Jim Langley, Senior Analyst, Congressional Budget Office, Washington, DC

USDA’s Cotton Outlook for 2014/2015
James Johnson, Agricultural Economist, Foreign Agricultural Service, Washington, DC

USDA’s Perspective on Policy Changes in China
Stephen MacDonald, Senior Economist, Economic Research Service, Washington, DC
Presentation Paper

Prospects for U.S. Cotton Production in a Shifting Price Environment
John R. C. Robinson, Professor and Extension Economist, Texas A&M University, Department of Agricultural Economics, College Station, TX

Risks and Rewards of Sourcing Cotton for Today’s Retail Market
A. Mark Neuman

Moderator: Paul Trupo, Branch Chief, Sugar & Dairy Imports, Foreign Agricultural Service, USDA, Washington, DC

Government Support Policies and the World Sugar Market
Don Phillips, Trade Advisor, American Sugar Alliance, St. Leonard, MD

From Deficit to Surplus: Managing The Shift in the NAFTA Sugar Balance
John Cropley, Senior Analyst, ED&F Man, New Orleans, LA

Implications of an Integrated U.S.-Mexican Sugar Sector
Contributing to the research and writing of this presentation were Steve Haley and Getachew Nigatu, Economic Research Service, USDA; and Lynn Kennedy, Louisiana State University.
Steven Zahniser, Agricultural Economist, Economic Research Service, USDA, Washington, DC

12:15 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Livestock & Poultry
Moderator: Anne Alonzo, Administrator, Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA, Washington, DC   

2014: The Opportunities and Challenges facing Small Meat Processors
Chris Young, Outreach Specialist, American Association of Meat Processors, Elizabethtown, PA

Sugar & Sweeteners
Moderator: Barbara Fesco, Economist, Dairy and Sweeteners Analysis Group, Farm Service Agency, USDA, Washington, DC

Mexican Sugar Outlook and Government Actions to Address Oversupply
Carlos Rello Lara, Director General, Fondo de Empresas Expropiadas del Sector Azucarero, Benito Juarez, Mexico

Cotton & Fibers
Thirty Years of Guessing: Why Cotton Forecasts Have Not Improved
Moderator: Herman Kohlmeyer, Jr., Managing Director, Michael J. Nugent and Company, Inc.,
New Orleans, LA

Terry Townsend, Executive Director, Retired, International Cotton Advisory Committee, Silver Spring, MD

Grains & Oilseeds
Moderator: Robert Johansson, Deputy Chief Economist, USDA, Washington, DC

Insights Into Current Policies Affecting Grains & Oilseeds
Sara Wyant, President, Agri-Pulse Communications, Inc., Washington, DC and Camdenton, MO

2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Track: Rural Development
U.S. Farm Land: Uses, Values & Policies
Speakers in this session will examine the changes in agricultural land use, rates of conversion to production, where they are located, as well as the value of land itself.  Other topics may include: the possibility of speculation and a land asset bubble; farm bill policy implications; trends in operator rents; the construction of wind farms; and changes to conservation areas as commodity prices fluctuate.
Moderator: Damona Doye, Professor of Agricultural Economics, Oklahoma State University
Department of Agricultural Economics, Stillwater, OK

U.S. Land Outlook
Jason R. Henderson, Associate Dean, Director of Purdue Extension, and Professor
Purdue University, College of Agriculture Administration, Agricultural Economics, West Lafayette, IN

Land Use
Future implications for the supply of agricultural land from land conversion, changes in land rents, and Farm Bill policies.
Lori Lynch, Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Maryland, Agricultural and Resource Economics, College Park, MD

Farmland Markets and Farm Business Finances
Jennifer Ifft, Agricultural Economist, Economic Research Service, USDA, Washington, DC

Launching Cooperative Extension’s Next Century
On May 8, 1914, Cooperative Extension was launched with the signing of the Smith-Lever Act. Learn how Extension has been translating agricultural research for practical application for 100 years.
Moderator: Krysta Harden, Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, USDA, Washington, DC
Celebrating the Legacy of Cooperative Extension 
For 100 years, the Smith-Lever Act has stimulated innovative research and vital educational programs for youth and adults through progressive information delivery systems that improved lives and shaped a nation. Speaker will give an overview of the legacy of Cooperative Extension. 
Douglas L. Steele, Director, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, College Station, TX

Cooperative Extension Today
Cooperative Extension “extends knowledge, changes lives.” This will be a fast-paced summary of program priorities, and impacts showing how current educational strategies help people, farm and ranch businesses and communities solve problems, develop skills and build a better future.
Frances Gould, Professor & Director, Agricultural Center Communications, Louisiana State University Agriculture Center, Baton Rouge, LA

Innovations for the Next Century
As Cooperative Extension launches its next 100 years, some keys to success will involve integration, partnership, entrepreneurship, engagement, high tech/high touch, and urban/rural. See how Extension is changing to meet the demands of a new demographic, economic and social era.
Jimmy Henning, Director, Associate Dean/ Director, Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY


TRACK: Agroforestry, Forests & Citrus
Citrus Greening & the Future of the Citrus Industry
Moderator: Chavonda Jacobs-Young, Associate Administrator for National Programs, Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville, MD

Industry Perspective: The Challenge of Huanglongbing (Citrus Greening) Disease
What is Citrus Greening? What is its present and potential impact? Why is control a challenge? Why are partnerships so critical to this disease?
Marylou Polek, Vice President, Science and Technology, Citrus Research Board, Visalia, CA

Research: Challenges, Successes & the Future
What is the present state of research? What do we know? What do we need to know?
Ed Stover, Agricultural Research Service, Subtropical Insects and Horticultural Research, USDA, Ft. Pierce, FL

Quarantine and Control
Early detection, monitoring, diagnostics, and the future outlook for Citrus Greening.
Prakash Hebbar, Citrus Health Response Program, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Pest Management, USDA, Riverdale, MD


TRACK: Rural Development
Local Food Businesses at the Rural/Urban Interface
USDA’s mission is to support rural producers and the rural economy by expanding market opportunities.  Urban markets represent a great opportunity for producers located near population centers; branding and marketing local or regionally-produced food is one way that rural producers can directly access urban consumers.  However, bridging the rural/urban divide is not always easy.  Infrastructure, marketing, and technology barriers create challenges. New models such as food hubs, cooperatives, and alternative distribution channels are facilitating and building these connections.
Moderator: Doug O'Brien, Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development, USDA, Washington, DC TBD

From Wholesale to Consumer-direct & Everything in Between
This speaker will discuss the evolution of the Eastern Market in Detroit, a 100-year-old market that has evolved into a wholesale market, farmers market and food hub and works with producers and neighboring states. Eastern Market has utilized several USDA programs.
Dan Carmondy, Executive Director, Eastern Market Corporation, Detroit, MA

Food as Leverage: Building Sustainable Markets & Improving Quality of Life
Hunger Mountain Cooperative has grown from a small storefront with a handful of employees to a bustling centerpiece in Brattleboro that employs over 160 people and works with over 400 producers around Vermont.
The co-op is cofounder of the Neighboring Food Cooperative Association, a secondary cooperative of New England co-ops leveraging its collective buying power to source regional products for its members.
Kari Bradley, Hunger Mountain Co-op, Burlington, Vermont Hunger Mountain Coop, Montpelier, Vermont

The Tech Fix: Bridging Rural Producers, Distributors &Urban Schools
Linda Mallers has found a way to marry her technology background and expertise with a passion for healthy, local food. FarmLogix is a model of how technology can address the challenges facing distributors and school districts interested in purchasing from local producers. FarmLogix recently secured a contract with the Chicago city school district and is expanding its footprint across the country, connecting rural food producers to new urban markets.
Linda Mallers, CEO, FarmLogix, Evanston, IL


TRACK: Markets & Weather
Weather & Agriculture 2014
Moderator: Mike Halpert, Acting Director, Climate Prediction Center, NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction, College Park, MD

A Behind the Scenes Look at the Drought Monitor: History, Tools, and Methods
Eric Luebehusen, Agricultural Meteorologist, Office of the Chief Economist, USDA

The U.S. Drought of 2012-13 Lingers and Shifts Westward
Brad Rippey, Agricultural Meteorologist, Office of the Chief Economist, USDA, Washington, DC


Weather Outlook for 2014
Anthony Artusa, Meteorologist, Climate Prediction Center, Camp Springs, MD


TRACK: Markets

Moderator: Peter Vitaliano, Vice President, Economic Policy & Market Research, National Milk Producers Federation, Arlington, VA

Dairy Outlook
Uthra Raghunathan, Agricultural Economist, Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA, Washington, DC

Development and Growth of the "GlobalDairyTrade" Platform
Margarita Sapozhnikov, Associate Principal, Charles River Associates, Auctions & Competitive Bidding Practice, Boston, MA

Challenges and Opportunities for the Southwestern Dairy Producer
Dave Bellows, Director of Risk Management, AgriVision Farm Management, LLC, Hartley, TX