ANIMAL AGRICULTURE ALLIANCE ANNOUNCES ITS ANNUAL 'STAKEHOLDERS SUMMIT'
Apr. 20, 2009
Source: Animal Agriculture Alliance news release
The Animal Agriculture Alliance's eighth industry-wide Stakeholders Summit will address the most critical issues in animal welfare today. The day and a half conference will be held May 12-13 at the Hotel Monaco in Alexandria, Virginia. This year's theme will be "Politics, Activism and Religion: Influencing the Debate on Animal Welfare in America." For the third year in a row, Mike Adams, host of AgriTalk and one of America's best-known agricultural journalists, will moderate this event. Special topics to be addressed at the Summit include:
• Regulating vs. Legislating Animal Welfare Standards;
• Establishing International Animal Welfare Guidelines;
• The Use of Religion in the Animal Welfare Debate;
• Improving Security and Deterring Threats; and
• Updates to Producer Groups' Animal Welfare Programs.
In addition, the Summit breakout sessions will feature speakers focusing on connecting the food chain, educating consumers and protecting American agriculture. Barbara Jackson, an award-winning independent rancher and member of the American National Cattlewomen's Association, will lead a session on reaching students on college campuses and in secondary schools. A representative of the Association of American Railroads has been invited to lead a session focusing on delivering positive messages to the public.
Krissa Thom, Member Services Manager at the Animal Agriculture Alliance, will lead a third breakout session providing a step-by-step lesson on establishing a Facebook presence - one of the most used and effective social networking sites on the web today. And, Katie Abrams, Graduate Teaching and Research Assistant of Agricultural Education and Communication at the University of Florida, will lead a session on reaching the urban audience.
A highlight of the program will feature updates to producer groups' animal welfare programs. Top experts from their respective segments will address recent updates and improvements to their animal welfare programs. When the Alliance first held this type of session in 2005, it intended for this session to facilitate representatives from across agriculture learning from each other. And, according to many Summit participants it succeeded. "What a great opportunity for seeing how different species groups are dealing with and making improvements in animal welfare," wrote one Summit participant. That sentiment was echoed by many others in attendance.
A key presentation of this year's Summit will be a presentation by Dr. Wes Jamison, Associate Professor of Communication at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida and an ordained Southern Baptist Minister, who will unveil a study on how animal rights groups are using religion to advance their agenda. "Given Dr. Jamison's previous extensive study of the animal rights movement and his understanding of their overall tactics, we eagerly anticipate the first disclosure of his findings at the Stakeholders Summit," said Johnson Smith, Executive Vice President of the Animal Agriculture Alliance (Alliance).
Additional topics include an update on development of important international animal welfare standards by the World Organization for Animal Health (commonly known as OIE), a presentation on the new administration's approach to animal agriculture, a federal legislative forecast, and an important presentation on how to improve security and deter threats.
Mid- and senior-level management of all companies in the food chain should attend the Summit. "Since the Alliance has focused almost exclusively on animal welfare since 1987, we believe that the depth of the Alliance's expertise allows us to provide those interested in farm animal welfare the most valuable program in the nation and we believe that the increase in the number of sponsors this year reflects the strength of the program," says Johnson Smith. "Our goal is to provide attendees from around the world the insight and information to successfully meet future challenges."
Event sponsors currently include Vance Publishing's Food 360° Group, U.S. Poultry and Egg Association, Murphy-Brown, North American Nutrition Companies, Tyson Foods, Intervet/Schering Plough, United Soybean Board, American Feed Industry Association, American Veal Association, Bayer Animal Health, Brownfield Ag News, BEEF magazine, National Hog Farmer, Hormel Foods, Monsanto, National Cattlemen's Beef Association, National Pork Board, National Pork Producers' Council, PCS Sales, BFI Innovations, Brakke Consulting, Kemin Industries, Poultry Times, United Egg Producers, Watt Agribusiness Media, Agri Beef, and American Farmland Trust.
For registration by April 25, 2009, the cost for attendance is $325 per person for Alliance members. After April 25, the cost is $375. For non-members, the registration fee is $375 prior to April 25, 2009, and then $425. Again in 2009, the Alliance will offer a special rate of $275 per person or $325 after April 25 for those in government or academia. Registration includes one reception, continental breakfast each day, lunch on Tuesday and a copy of the Summit Proceedings.
Hotel accommodations should be made directly with the Hotel Monaco-Alexandria for the special rate of $219 single/double. Reservations must be made directly with the hotel by April 19, 2009 under the Animal Agriculture Alliance Summit block to receive this special rate by calling 1-800-368-5047 or book online now at www.monaco-alexandria.com, booking code AIL.
Current Summit registration and hotel information are available on the Alliance website. Registration for the Summit can also be made securely via the Alliance website at www.animalagalliance.org, or the registration form can be faxed to (703) 524-1921.
All registrations must be submitted in advance of the conference. For additional information regarding the Summit, contact the Animal Agriculture Alliance at (703) 562-5160 or firstname.lastname@example.org.