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Industry leaders tackle key issues at Alberta Pork AGM

by 5m Editor
21 November 2006, at 3:10pm

ALBERTA - Alberta’s pork producers will have the opportunity to hear industry leaders address the key issues in today’s pork production when Alberta Pork presents its 2006 Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Calgary December 6 - 7.

This year’s AGM, to be held at Calgary’s Coast Plaza Hotel and Conference Centre, continues the annual industry meeting’s tradition of bringing in industry leaders and researchers from all over the world as key speakers, says Jurgen Preugschas, chairman of Alberta Pork, the organization which represents the province’s pork producers.

“Our line-up of key speakers reflects the needs of a changing industry, whether it be the changing face of the worldwide pork market, internal regulations here in Canada, or the opportunities available through new technology,” says Preugschas. “The AGM will not only give our producers the opportunity to hear from those on the leading edge of these important issues, but it also gives them the chance to meet and learn from each other.”

“The Perfect Storm — Competitiveness Issues, Regulatory Pressures and Political Change” will be the umbrella topic for a series of keynote presentations. Speakers include Jerry Bouma of Toma and Bouma Management Consultants in Edmonton, Lee Funke of Torque Communications in Edmonton, and Keith Wilson of the Wilson Law Office, also in Edmonton.

The direction of the world’s food trends will be the topic addressed by Chris Wolf, a widely quoted authority on consumer and industry trends. Presently the director of strategic innovation with the Turover Straus Group, Wolf has helped several multinational corporations identify and address emerging product and consumer opportunities.

Growing concern over the impact of bio-energy on the competitiveness of the hog industry will be discussed in a presentation by Al Mussell, senior research associate with the George Morris Centre in Guelph, Ontario. Mussell leads a research and teaching program in agribusiness management, agricultural marketing and environmental economics, among other fields of study.

Dennis Avery, director of the Centre for Global Food Issues in Churchville, Virginia, will speak on “The Environmental Triumph of High-Yield Farming.” Avery has had a high profile career monitoring world food production and the overall sustainability of world agriculture, having served as agricultural analyst for the U.S. Department of State and as a staff member on the President’s National Advisory Commission on Food and Fiber.

The ongoing issue of animal care will be addressed by Dr. Wes Jamison, a research fellow with the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. With expertise in animal welfare, animal rights and agricultural politics, Jamison conducts research in the U.S. and Europe on animal/human interaction as well as urban/rural issues.

Lunch speakers include Florian Possberg, first vice-president of the Canadian Pork Council (CPC), who will be speaking on “The National Perspective: Policy Issues, Concerns and Directions.” Alberta Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, Hon. Doug Horner, will be the guest speaker at lunch on Day Two.

Horner’s address will be followed by the annual business meeting. All registered guests can participate in the discussion but only delegates and directors can vote. Other events at the AGM include the announcement of the winners of this year’s Spectra Awards, which recognize leadership in Alberta’s pork industry. Also, as in previous years, a silent auction will be held to raise money for charity.

The AGM will feature a banquet Wednesday evening, with lunch and refreshments provided throughout the two-day event. There is no cost to register for the annual general meeting. However, those wishing to attend are asked to register in advance. To register, visit the Alberta Pork Web site at www.albertapork.com, click the “Events” button and fill out the registration form. Or contact Gloria Prochinsky by e-mail at [email protected] or call toll-free 1-877-247-7675.

Alberta Pork represents more than 1,000 pork producers in the province. The industry produces more than 3.5 million hogs each year. The overall agriculture industry directly and indirectly generates one out of three jobs in the province.

5m Editor