December 15, 2011

River Issues to be Highlighted during Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture

Saturday morning sessions devoted to management and environmental concerns

Today, the Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler announced that the 2012 Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture will address Missouri's river system and environmental impacts affecting the agriculture industry among many other topics that affect farmers and agribusinesses across the nation. The Conference, held Jan. 19-21, is coming to Kansas City for the first time in its history and will host more than 40 state and national speakers addressing current issues that impact the agriculture industry. Registration is now open at

The Sat., Jan. 21, morning panel discussion and seminar will focus on the management of Missouri's rivers and environmental regulations affecting agriculture. The panel discussion led by Missouri Farm Bureau President Blake Hurst, "Rain, Rivers and Resources - Managing Missouri's Rivers for Agriculture," will explore both the challenges faced during 2011 as well as address the future of agriculture along the rivers.

Panel members for the river management discussion include:

  • Brigadier General John R. McMahon, Commander and Division Engineer, US Army Corps of Engineers, Northwestern Division
  • Tom Waters, President of the Missouri Levee & Drainage District Association
  • Randy Asbury, Executive Director of the Coalition to Protect the Missouri River
  • Richard Oswald, President, Missouri Farmers Union
  • Rob Korff, Chairman, Missouri Corn Merchandising Council

Blake Hurst, president of the Missouri Farm Bureau, will moderate the discussion and accept questions from attendees.

Immediately following the panel on managing Missouri's rivers, James Martin and Karl Brooks of the Environmental Protection Agency will host a seminar titled "Agriculture and the Environment," exploring current regulations and recommendations. Martin and Brooks serve as the regional administrators for EPA regions 7 and 8.

The 2012 Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture will be held at the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City. The Conference is open to the public and registration is required for most events. In addition to the panel discussion on rivers systems and the environmental impacts, the Conference will highlight topics including the future of agriculture research and education, the impact of international trade and marketing, animal health issues in the heartland and the co-existence of conventional, organic and genetic food production. The 43rd Missouri Governor's Conference on Agriculture will kick off with the Taste of AgriMissouri welcome reception featuring some of Missouri's greatest foods and beverages.

Conference registration forms are now available online at The conference registration includes all sessions, meals, speakers and entertainment. The registration fee is $200 if you register by December 31, 2011. The event is funded through sponsorships and registrations.

For more information about the Missouri Department of Agriculture and its programs, visit