By Danielle Sweetser

Dr. Jason Evans, Associate Professor of Agricultural Business at SUNY Cobleskill, will be discussing “The Changing American Food Landscape: Opportunities and Challenges for Northeast Agriculture” at The Farmer’s Museum 2014 conference, A Celebration of Our Agricultural Community: Food and Farming. The event, which will be held on Saturday, November 15, will present Dr.Evans with an opportunity to discuss the global and local forces that are currently shaping the food systems of the United States and how that will eventually create entrepreneurial opportunities for manufacturers in the northeast. The event is co-sponsored by SUNY Cobleskill, and other speakers include: Richard Ball, Commissioner of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, Doug Thompson, Owner of G&T Farm, Don Smyers, Executive Director, Schoharie and Otsego Counties Cornell Cooperative Extension, as well as a number of farm and agribusiness owners throughout the area.

The overall goals of the conference are to encourage the public to become more knowledgeable consumers; explore current trends in the food system and in agricultural production; provide networking opportunities for regional farmers to connect with one another, potential partners and prospective customers; and to draw attention to the influence of agriculture on the local economy.

Dr. Evans will also discuss the many challenges faced by policy-makers, producers, and consumers in their efforts to expand local/regional food markets and will highlight potential resolutions. “I am honored to speak at this inaugural event, which in and of itself is evidence that people are increasingly interested in the food economy,” remarked Dr. Evans. “It is critical that producers have insight into forthcoming changes in the American food system that will create both opportunities and challenges for their businesses.”

Enlightening and inspiring both farmers and the public alike, A Celebration of Our Agricultural Community, hopes to unify and compel the economy in central New York. This event is free for all to attend and will be prefaced by a special film “The Great American Wheat Harvest.”