Election of a new president and vice president to lead the American Farm Bureau Federation, great speakers and dynamic educational workshops will highlight the organization’s 2016 Annual Convention & IDEAg Trade Show in January. The event takes place Jan. 9-12 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
Nearly 7,000 Farm Bureau members from across the nation are expected to gather to hear from distinguished leaders and participate in a grassroots policy-setting process that will guide AFBF through 2016. During the annual convention’s business session, voting delegates will select new leaders for the nation’s largest farming and ranching organization.
Farm Bureau members may choose from two dozen workshops covering a variety of topics and issues on Sunday, Jan. 10, and Monday, Jan. 11. Topics covered will include environmental regulations, the latest ag technology trends, trade, food safety and transparency, economic issues affecting today’s farmers, and skills and ideas leaders can take home and apply at their county and state Farm Bureaus.
In addition, directly related to AFBF’s mission to enhance and strengthen the lives of rural Americans and to build strong, prosperous agricultural communities, a trio of workshops will zero in on today’s hottest rural development topics. Finding and funding rural entrepreneurs, navigating grant programs, and serving those who have served our nation through the Farm Bureau Patriot Project will be covered.
Full workshop descriptions will be available in the program on-site in Orlando.
The convention kicks off with the opening general session on Sunday morning, when AFBF President Bob Stallman will share Farm Bureau’s direction for 2016. At the closing general session on Monday morning, acclaimed real estate mogul and “Shark Tank” investor Barbara Corcoran will give the closing keynote address, providing insights on teamwork and courage when faced with pressure-filled situations.
On Sunday and Monday, the Cultivation Center on the IDEAg Trade Show floor will serve as the educational centerpiece of the trade show. Located in the middle of the show floor, behind the AFBF booth, the Cultivation Center features a seating area where exhibitors, sponsors, educators and ag enthusiasts will present 15- to 30-minute sessions. Topics will include exhibitors’ newest and best ideas, FRED Talks (Farmer and Rancher Education) and previews of upcoming convention sessions.
The Cultivation Center is also the location for the AFBF Presidential Candidates Forum (Jan. 9), Farm Bureau Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge live competition (Jan. 10) and the Young Farmers and Ranchers Discussion Meet “final four” round (Jan. 11).
Foundation for Agriculture events
Members attending the convention are encouraged to support ag literacy by bidding on items in the online/onsite auction and purchasing tickets to attend Flapjacks With the Foundation, the Foundation Golf Classic or the Foundation’s Night Out, which includes a live auction featuring sports packages and trips. Learn more at annualconvention.fb.org.
Before registering online at http://annualconvention.fb.org/register/, farmer and rancher members should check with their state Farm Bureau office to see if they have already been registered. The full Farm Bureau member convention registration fee is $100 for Saturday, Jan. 9, through Tuesday, Jan. 12, and includes the IDEAg Trade Show, Young Farmer & Rancher competitive events, general sessions, workshops, the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture Silent Auction and the annual business session of voting delegates where the new AFBF president and vice president will be elected. Non-members may register for $250.
For more information on exhibiting or sponsorships, contact the IDEAg Group at [email protected].