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Ohio River Valley conference to focus on new ag products
By SARA DRYDEN
Indiana Correspondent

MADISON, Ind. — The face of Ohio River Valley agriculture is continually changing. With the end of the federal tobacco program, many farmers in Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio are looking to new products to grow and market.

The entrepreneurial spirit of farmers may be inspired at the 4th annual Ohio River Valley Farm Marketing Conference, Feb. 21-22, at Clifty Falls State Park in Madison, Ind.

“This is a great opportunity to share the latest ideas on farm marketing. You may learn something at this conference that could make a significant financial difference in your operation,” said Robert White, the Indiana director of the USDA’s Rural Development office.

The conference is targeted toward growers, ag entrepreneurs, ag educators, community leaders, local government officials and other farm stakeholders.

Registration is $40 before Feb. 6 and $50 after that date. This fee includes all conference activities and three meals. The fee to attend one day is $25.

The conference will offer a valuable and affordable day and a half of presentations, workshops, and discussions, focused on agricultural marketing. The conference will include general session speakers, breakout sessions, one-on-one roundtable discussions with producers, panel discussions and trade show exhibits.

The conference will begin with a Wine and Cheese Tasting and a Taste of Regional Cuisine, a sampling of local products and a panel of chefs and producers discussing the elements of a successful buying arrangement.

The featured speaker of the conference will be Barry Moltz, author of You Need to Be a Little Crazy; The Truth about Starting and Growing Your Business. Jimmy Baird, owner of Little Kentucky Smokehouse, a ham processing plant in Union County, Ky., will speak at the closing.

Feature presentations will include: Sharpening Your Competitive Edge, Starting out with a Certified Kitchen - Small Scale Processing, Marketing that Regional Flavor, Cooperatives 101, Making Sense of Certification Alphabet Soup, Meeting the Needs of Differing Demographics, Marketing Alliances from Informal to Formal, Home Processing Shopping List, New Tools for Old Tasks and New Ideas in Working Together.

For details, contact Sharon Ellison by phone at 317-290-3100, ext. 429 or by e-mail at Sharon.ellison@in.usda.gov; Deb Conley by phone at 317-232-8771 or by e-mail at dconley@isda.in.gov; Angela Caporelli or Janet Eaton by phone at 502-564-4983 or by e-mail at angela.caporelli @ky.gov or janet.eaton@ky.gov

This farm news was published in the February 1, 2006 issue of Farm World.

2/1/2006