Ohio Livestock Coalition to Host 15th Annual Meeting on September 7

State agency directors, national agriculture professionals to address Ohio’s farm community

Improving transparency in livestock farming, engaging with consumers and addressing water quality and nutrient management in Ohio will highlight the 15th Ohio Livestock Coalition (OLC) Annual Meeting and Industry Symposium. The meeting will be held. on September 7 at the Conference Center at Northpointe in Lewis Center, Ohio.

"The meeting provides farm organization leaders and farmers from across Ohio with critical perspectives from state and national agriculture leaders," said David White, OLC executive director. "It also establishes a venue for these groups to have constructive dialogue and education on current events facing the farm community and its stakeholders, both in Ohio and across the country."

The meeting will open with remarks by OLC President Dr. David Glauer. The meeting will continue with presentations by the following experts:

Charlie Arnot, CEO of the Center for Food Integrity, will discuss how to communicate with today's consumer. The Center for Food Integrity is a non-profit organization dedicated to building consumer trust and confidence in today's food system with members from the U.S. and Canada. Arnot is recognized as a thought leader on food and agriculture issues and is a thought provoking writer and speaker.

Mike Martin, director of communications of Cargill, will present on improving transparency for animal agriculture and share his experiences from working with The Oprah Winfrey Show. In 2011, Cargill hosted The Oprah Winfrey Show to its Colorado plant to dispel myths of what happens inside a meat processing facility. Martin supports Cargill's $15 billion U.S. animal protein business and is based in Wichita, KS. He is responsible for strategic and tactical media relations, reputation management, executive leadership team support and counsel, message development, crisis communications and internal communications.

Director James Zehringer, Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) – As ODNR Director, Zehringer's key priorities include the environmentally safe development of shale oil and gas in Ohio, addressing the water quality issues in Lake Erie and other Ohio waterways impacted by phosphorous loading, and regulation of dangerous wild animals. Prior to this appointment he served as Director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture where he worked closely with the Ohio EPA and Ohio Department of Natural Resources to develop local solutions to the algae issues in Grand Lake St. Marys. He also helped to establish the Agricultural Nutrients & Water Quality Working Group to examine ways to reduce agricultural-based sources of phosphorus from entering Ohio's waterways.

Director David Daniels, Ohio Department of Agriculture – Director Daniels, appointed on February 15, 2012, brings the perspective of a family farmer, small businessman and local government official to the department. During his career in public service, he fought against unnecessary red tape and regulations and to foster a healthy business climate to create new opportunities for jobs. Following four successful terms in the Ohio House of Representatives, he was elected to the Ohio Senate in 2010 to serve the families of the 17th Ohio Senate District, which includes Clinton, Fayette, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Pike, Ross, Vinton and portions of Lawrence and Pickaway counties.

Director Scott Nally, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency – Director Nally brings more than 20 years of public and private environmental management experience to the position. He leads the cabinet-level agency that is responsible for implementing federal and state regulations to protect human health and the environment while ensuring the environmentally sound operations of business and government activities imperative to economic growth. Director Nally comes to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency after most recently spending the last six years at Ohio's sister agency in Indiana.

In partnership with the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, OLC will also present the 2012 Neighbor of the Year awards and the Environmental Stewardship 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. The Environmental Stewardship Award 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 $35/person if paid by August 30 or $45/person if paid after this date or at the door. Registration begins at 9 a.m. with the meeting starting at 9:30 a.m. To register for the meeting or for more information, please contact Amy Hurst at (614) 246-8262 or at ahurst@ofbf.org. Registration information is also available at www.ohiolivestock.org.

The OLC, formed in 1997, is a statewide trade organization consisting of diverse agriculture organizations and individual farmers committed to advancing environmentally friendly, socially responsible and economically viable livestock farming practices.

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