Last week’s Agribusiness Showcase & Conference held on February 11 & 12, 2014 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines was jam-packed with a record number of exhibitors, speakers, and sessions.
The event increased attendance this year and drew a large and diverse group of over 1,150 progressive agricultural thinkers from Iowa and surrounding states. Attendees included Certified Crop Advisers (CCAs), crop production and grain professionals, pesticide applicators, seed industry representatives, and college students all took advantage of the opportunity to explore the innovative tools they need to enhance their careers and grow their business.
Over 120 Exhibitors were able to showcase their products and services on the tradeshow floor and interact with their target audiences. Additionally, CCAs earned CEUs by talking to exhibitors on the tradeshow floor.
Over 50 nationally recognized speakers from industry, academia, and regulatory bodies spoke to attendees on a wide selection of topics that included special sessions on Iowa’s Water Quality Initiative, FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act and new products.
On Tuesday, CCAs were able to choose from over twenty different sessions on crop, pest, soil and water, and nutrient management offered at the Ag Industry and Crop Management Conference while Agribusiness owners, executives and senior managers attended the Agribusiness Leadership Forum. Both educational tracks began with a special panel discussion focused on Ag Retailers’ & CCAs’ Role in Iowa’s Water Quality Initiative with Iowa State University and National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment scientists. EPA Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey, Iowa DNR Director Chuck Gipp provided remarks during the first session of the Agribusiness Leadership Forum and then at the CCA Recognition Luncheon.
On Wednesday, attendees were again able to choose from multiple educational sessions which included: an informational presentation by Dr. Charles Hurburgh with Iowa State University and David Fairfield with the National Grain and Feed on the Food Safety Modernization Act; Commercial Pesticide Recertification training led by Iowa State University; Product Rollouts presented by Hagie Manufacturing Company and Syngenta; and the Seed Forum hosted by the Iowa Seed Association. Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds was the keynote speaker during the All Industry Luncheon.