There’s no doubt that agriculture plays a vital role in Michigan’s economy. In April 2012, Michigan State University researchers announced that the food and agriculture supply chain shows the industry contributes an estimated $91.4 billion to Michigan’s economy—an increase of nearly 50 percent from 2004 to 2010. Whether it’s wacky weather or government regulations, agriculture’s changing climate continues to challenge Michigan farmers. That’s why Michigan State University Extension is bringing together farmers and agricultural professionals with interests in various major agricultural commodities to learn more about the changes on the horizon at the Growing Michigan Agriculture Conference.
Recruiting, Hiring and Keeping Topnotch Labor
Bernie Erven, PhD, The Ohio State University
Managers are challenged with finding and keeping quality employees. No simple recipe makes it easy. This session focuses on the ingredients for hiring success: step-by step planning of the hiring process, attracting qualified applicants, interviewing with confidence, checking references, selecting the right people to fit the needs of the business and ideas to help keep good people after a big investment in them. We’ll also address the ever-changing needs of agriculture, new hiring tools, new skills needed to “up your manager game” and strong competition from other
Emerging Food Safety Issues: What are the opportunities?
Dr. Julie Funk, DVM, Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine
Emerging food safety issues will increase scrutiny and provide opportunities for how food is produced, distributed, processed and prepared in the future. Funk will highlight new and emerging food safety issues that impact Michigan agricultural businesses. Changes in the food industry structure, farm size, food company demographics, sources of food in the United States and
consumer demographics impact food safety. With improved diagnostics and surveillance will likely result in increased detection of outbreaks. You will learn about the Food Safety Modernization Act, increasing scrutiny of on-farm practices, food fraud, impacts of food safety incidents on economics, private standards and public standards and human capital needs.
Precision Ag Technology
Joe Luck, PhD, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Modern production agriculture continues to incorporate new technologies into everyday practice with tools like GPS and RTK satellite navagation. The ability to apply information from technology becomes the key for gaining efficiencies and greater profits. Learn what the future holds concerning advancements in technology for whole farm management.
Considering What We’ve Just Heard Round-table discussion
Managing soil to improve infiltration and water holding capacity
Donald Reicosky, PhD, Soil Scientist Emeritus, USDAARS
Soil is the farmer’s greatest resource. Regardless of soil type, farmers need soils that allow the water to infiltrate quickly and then hold moisture in the soil profile.Reicosky’s research involved describing crop response and water use on conventional till and no-till systems with and without irrigation. His more current work focuses on tillage and residue management in cropping systems. Reicosky has spoken to farmer groups around the world, sharing his knowledge of carbon management to improve soil quality.
Feeds, Price and Volatility
MSU Extension Specialist Team, Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics and Animal Science
In food animal production, now is an important time to discuss strategic and global perspective of feed availability, volatile feed costs and price received, variable feed quality, increasing on-farm storage capabilities, exports, and a structurally-changing global feed industry.
Lessons from the 2012 Growing Season
The only constant is change. This theme rang true in the 2012 growing season when parts of Michigan received adequate to excess rain while others suffered from extreme drought. A panel of Michigan farmers will addressvmanagement practices they have implemented over time, and discuss how these practice responded to the variable conditions of 2012.
Registration is $50 per person.
Registration begins at 8 a.m. The program runs from 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
If you have any questions regarding sponsorship opportunities for the Growing Michigan Agriculture Conference, please contact Megghan Honke at (517) 353-3175 ext. 229, or firstname.lastname@example.org.