Arlington, VA - Dec. 5, 2019 – The National Grain and Feed Association’s (NGFA) 48th annual Country Elevator Conference and Trade Show, the single largest gathering of country grain elevators in the nation, will feature Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, as well as expert insights into the 2020 market outlook, the future of food and more.
The 2019 edition of this “meeting of the year” for country elevator managers, merchants and personnel, to be conducted Dec. 8-10 at the J.W. Marriott in Indianapolis, will bring together more than 600 agribusiness professionals for a day-and-a half of information and networking.
In addition to notable keynote speakers, breakout sessions will include workshops examining the business implications of rural mental health challenges, an in-depth market advisory session and an examination of the impacts of African Swine Fever-prevention efforts on the grain and feed sectors.
“NGFA’s Country Elevator Committee and staff work to develop a robust program that makes this conference a unique and well-rounded event for country elevators and businesses across the supply chain,” said Brian Gordon, NGFA’s Country Elevator Committee chairman and chief executive officer of the Ritzville Warehouse Co. in Ritzville, Wash.
“This conference is a great opportunity to gain critical and actionable information in one place at one time that will make a real difference in your business operations and bottom lines.
"And of course, the exhibitor trade show and great networking events offer plenty of time to connect with and learn from industry colleagues and introduce younger members of the NGFA to a career path in the grain industry.”
Program general sessions include:
• A keynote address from Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on the morning of Monday, Dec. 9.
• Seth Meyer, research professor at the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI) at the University of Missouri, and immediate past chairman of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) World Agricultural Outlook Board
• Jack Bobo, CEO of Futurity
• A panel on “Organics, Hemp and the Opportunities of Innovation,” with Eric Jackson, CEO of Pipeline Foods, and Steve Groff, founding chairman of Groff North America.
• A panel on “Boosting Your Business through Diversity and Inclusion” with Mia Farrell, Ed.D., assistant dean and director for diversity at the University of Kentucky, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, and national president of Minorities in Agriculture Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANRRS); Dave Hoogmoed, executive vice president of Land O'Lakes and president of Purina Animal Nutrition; and Megan Weidner, vice president of corporate responsibility and sustainability at Bunge North America, Inc.
Breakout sessions include:
• “Resiliency for Agriculture: The Business Implications of Rural Mental Health Challenges” with Michele Payn, principal of Cause Matters Corp.
• “African Swine Fever: Analyzing Impacts of a Global Crisis” with Michael Nepveux, economist at the American Farm Bureau Federation.
• “The New Hedging Frontier: How Grain Departments Can Lead the Charge in Hedging Fertilizer and Interest Rate Exposures” with Richard Jelinek, vice president of global education; Eric Donovan, managing director and head of FX & interest rates; and Josh Linville, senior risk management consultant, all at INTL FCStone.