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Ohio Livestock Coalition 16th Annual Meeting and Industry Symposium Sept. 6

Published Jul. 15, 2013 | Discuss this article on Facebook
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Sep. 6, 2013 | 09:00 am - 02:00 pm

Conference Center at Northpointe
9243 Columbus Pike (US-23)
Lewis Center, OH 43035

The role Ohio’s agriculture community plays in meeting customer expectations for social responsibility, building consumer trust and planning for the future will lead the discussion at the 16th Annual Ohio Livestock Coalition (OLC) Annual Meeting and Industry Symposium. The meeting will be held on September 6 at the Conference Center at Northpointe in Lewis Center, Ohio.

“State and national agricultural leaders recognize that, more than ever, consumers depend on the leadership of Ohio’s farm community, and our partners, to ensure we are producing food that meets their demands for responsibility, safety and quality,” said David White, OLC executive director. “The annual meeting provides farm leaders, the agricultural community and our stakeholders with the opportunity to exchange information, gain knowledge and discuss the issues and innovations most important to the future of Ohio’s farmers and our nation’s food supply.”

This year’s speakers include the following Ohio leaders and nationally recognized experts dedicated to building consumer support for today’s farm and food practices and seeking new opportunities for tomorrow’s agricultural leaders:

David Fikes, vice president of consumer/community affairs and communications for the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), will discuss the role of the farm community in helping food industry stakeholders achieve their social responsibility goals to meet consumer expectations. FMI represents supermarkets, grocery stores and all venues of food retail and works directly with consumer leaders as well as health, nutrition and science professionals to better understand and align consumer needs with FMI member programs and practices to ensure food security and food safety.

Bruce McPheron, vice president of agricultural administration and dean of the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University, will discuss the goals and vision for the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences. Dr. McPheron’s vision focuses squarely on the future of agriculture and is aimed toward strengthening the college experience to produce career-ready graduates. Originally from Kenton, Ohio, McPheron began his career as a 4-H county extension agent in Ohio in the early 1980s. For more than a decade, he served on Penn State’s leadership team, first as associate dean and director of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Experiment Station and as dean since 2009.

Erika Poppelreiter, account supervisor for Ketchum North American Corporate Practice, manages social media for the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) and will discuss the efforts to build consumer trust in American agriculture. USFRA consists of more than 80 farmer and rancher-led organizations and agricultural partners representing virtually all aspects of agriculture, working to engage in dialogue with consumers who have questions about how today’s food is grown and raised. Poppelreiter lives on a farm in northeast Kansas where she and her husband raise corn, soybeans and manage a stocker beef-cattle operation. She graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in agriculture communications and journalism and has spent her career working in agriculture public relations and communications.

Glynn Tonsor, associate professor at Kansas State University (K-State) Department of Agricultural Economics, will discuss the growing consumer interest in animal welfare practices and how public perceptions and expectations impact animal agriculture and the food system. At K-State, Dr. Tonsor is primarily devoted to a range of integrated research and extension activities with particular focus on the cattle/beef and swine/pork industries. Dr. Tonsor grew up on a farrow-to-finish hog farm in northeast Missouri, and has expertise in topics including animal identification and traceability, animal welfare and handling, food safety, and price risk management and analysis. His integrated research and extension program has resulted in multiple journal article publications and numerous outreach contributions.

In partnership with the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation and Farm Credit Mid-America, OLC will also present the 2013 Neighbor of the Year awards. The Neighbor of the Year Award recognizes two rural residents – one farmer and one non-farmer – who have positively developed and enhanced relationships between neighbors in Ohio’s farm communities. Additionally, in cooperation with the Ohio Pork Producers Council, Ohio Cattlemen’s Association, Ohio Poultry Association, Ohio Sheep Improvement Association and Ohio Dairy Producers Association, OLC coordinates the Environmental Stewardship Award program, which recognizes the many accomplishments made by family farmers to protect Ohio’s land, air and water quality and to conserve the state’s natural resources.

Registration for the event is $45/person if paid before August 27, or $55/person if paid after this date or at the door. Registration for high school and full-time college students is $35/person if paid by August 27. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the meeting starts at 9:30 a.m. To register for the meeting or for more information, please contact Amy Hurst at (614) 246-8262 or at [email protected]. Registration information is also available at

Here is the tentative agenda: 

9 a.m. Registration/Continental breakfast

9:30 a.m. Program begins

9:30 a.m. Welcome - Dick Isler, OLC president

9:35 a.m   "Goals & Vision for OSU CFAES" - Dr. Bruce McPheron

9:50 a.m. "Animal Welfare & Market Decision: What & Who Influences Them" - David Fikes

10:30 a.m. "Producers, Animals & Consumers: Animal Welfare in US Food Animal Production - public perceptions and expectations of animal agriculture, how these impact the food animal and consumer food industries, and various industry approaches for addressing the growing public interest in animal welfare" - Glynn Tonsor

11:30 a.m. Awards Program - environmental stewardship and neighbor of the year awards

Noon Lunch

1 p.m. "What is social responsibility and how can farmers help food industry stakeholders achieve their social repsonsibility goals?" - David Fikes

1:45 p.m. "Building Trust in the American brand of Agriculture" - Erika Poppelreiter

2:30 p.m. Adjourn 

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