NCSU Ag Economists To Speak At Ag Development Forum

Economists Mike Walden and Blake Brown will mark out farm strategies during Southern Farm Show in February.

Published on: Jan 23, 2012

It is hard to believe this year will mark the seventh annual Ag Development Forum at the Southern Farm Show, but the fact that time does move fast highlights one of the main reasons farmers need such an agriculture forum -- to help them keep up with a fast-changing industry.

The forum, often referred to as the "Commissioner's forum," is hosted by N.C. Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler and the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The Commissioner will deliver his annual State of Agriculture address during the event, which will place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Feb. 2, in the Holshouser Building at the State Fairgrounds.

Keynote speakers will be Mike Walden and Blake Brown, agricultural economists at N.C. State University. The pair will highlight trends they expect to have an impact on the state's economy and on the agricultural industry.

"The forum continues to provide participants with information we hope they can use to benefit their farms and businesses," Troxler says. "I encourage farmers, agribusiness professionals and others interested in agricultural policy and economics to attend."

Farm safety will be the subject of a roundtable discussion featuring representatives of the state and federal labor departments, the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, N.C. State University's Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, and the North Carolina Farm Bureau.

Admission to the forum is free, and lunch will be provided. Registration is requested by Jan. 27. To register, go to Individuals with questions may contact NCDA&CS' Chrissy Waggett at 919-707-3008.

The forum is sponsored by Agri Supply and R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.

The Ag Development Forum will be just one of many events at the 2012 Southern Farm Show. A few others during the three-day show include a N.C. Soybean Producers Association meeting at 10 a.m. in the Martin Building. That meeting which will feature a speaker from Top Third Marketing.

The N.C. Pork Council will also hold its annual meeting during the farm show. And the Tobacco Growers Association of North Carolina will have their annual meeting on Friday at 10 a.m., in the Holshouser Building. In addition, the Carolinas Farm Stewardship Association will also meet during the Southern Farm Show and NCDA Pesticide (the pesticide Division of the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services) will conduct training during the event.

Learn more about the details by following the links at the official Southern Farm Show website at