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Best of NAMA 2020

Source: by Ben Potter, Senior Editor, Farm Futures

Pictured: Gregg Doud, the chief agricultural trade negotiator during the Trump administration, is interviewed by This Week in Agribusiness co-anchor Mike Pearson during a virtual session at the recent Farm Futures Business Summit. Doud helped orchestrate the Phase One trade agreement between the U.S. and China, and was a keynote speaker at the summit.

For more than a decade the Farm Futures Business Summit has given thousands of farmers across the country the chance to improve upon a wide variety of critical business and operational skills, including farm management, labor and lender relations, tax and accounting strategies, farm succession, agtech adoption, and much more.

This year, the FFBS opted for a change of plans. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the surrounding logistical concerns and safety measures, the event was shifted from its normal January timing to June 16-17 in Coralville, Iowa.

In addition to an enthusiastic live audience, the summit also attracted a strong virtual audience, according to Don Tourte, SVP of sales and events with Farm Progress. The all-digital event incorporated online only exclusive content and interviews in addition to livestreams from the main event stage. In all, well over 20 hours of live content was streamed to participants over the two-and-a-half day live event, Tourte explained.

"Continuing in our drive to deliver content and audiences in new and innovate ways, we are proud to be among the first in the event industry to provide a professionally produced hybrid experience to our attendees and sponsors," he said.

An undeniable highlight of this year's event was a special presentation from Gregg Doud, the chief agricultural trade negotiator during the Trump administration. Doud helped orchestrate the Phase One trade agreement between the U.S. and China.

Doud says he and his team worked around the clock during negotiations, often posting up at night on office couches so they could work late and get an early start the following morning. He is proud of that work, noting that it has paid dividends so far. This year, ag exports to China are already above $10 billion and it's anticipated the fourth quarter will result in China purchasing at least $10 billion of U.S. soybeans.

"Can we do another $20 billion from now until the end of the year?" he pondered before the audience. "It might be pretty close, especially considering what's going on in the meat side of the equation."

Other event highlights included:

Management tactics for leading farmers, hosted by farm management consultant and Idaho rancher Dick Wittman

An NCGA panel discussion that focused on the future of ethanol

A succession panel featuring multigenerational Midwestern farm families

A mid-range and long-range weather outlook from "This Week in Agribusiness" meteorologist Greg Soulje

A special panel of market analysts emceed by Max Armstrong, host of Farm Progress America

Those who missed this year's summit have until September 1, 2021 to access the key sessions from the comfort of their laptop or home computer.

Visit to register.

About Farm Futures
Farm Futures is the significant business information resource for large-scale U.S. farmers and producers. Online, apps, daily newsletters, webinars, seminars (including the Farm Futures Business Summit) and in print, Farm Futures [] provides business and management information to largescale, high-income U.S. farm operators. The information resource leads its market segment in producer preference. Farm Futures is a Farm Progress brand with extensive digital content and marketing resources. Farm Progress, by Informa Markets.

About Farm Progress
As part of Informa Markets, Farm Progress is the largest, most diversified agriculture information business in North America. Through a robust network of live events, digital products, data, marketing services, broadcasting and local and national publications, Farm Progress enables the nation's most economically significant farmers, growers and ranchers to connect and do business. It serves 80% of the 2 million farms and ranches in the U.S., and an estimated 85% of the nation's annual agricultural gross domestic product.

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