This week I attended the inaugural Florida Industrial Hemp Conference & Expo in Orlando. Hemp has become a hot topic in agriculture today since so many states have created legislation allowing it to be grown and more are in the process. That includes my home state of Florida.
I asked all the people I spoke with or interviewed during the Conference how USDA’s announced interim final rule on the Domestic Hemp Production Program would affect the budding industry and their company or organization. It appears that Florida and USDA are taking big steps to create some certainty frameworks for farmers to grow a product that can be made into thousands and thousands of products.
Includes in the program are: Florida Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services, Director of Cannabis, Holly Bell; Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Jerry Frankhauser; Geoff Whaling, Chairman of the National Hemp Association and Coordinator of the Florida Industrial Hemp Conference, Gene Jones.
I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.
This week we're going to learn about the Farmer Veteran Coalition with founder/director, Michael O'Gorman.
We cultivate a new generation of farmers and food leaders, and develop viable employment and meaningful careers through the collaboration of the farming and military communities. We believe that veterans possess the unique skills and character needed to strengthen rural communities and create sustainable food systems. We believe that agriculture offers purpose, opportunity, and physical and psychological benefits.
Michael talks about what motivated him to start the organization and how it has developed. He has examples of individuals who have developed successful farming operations with support from the Coalition. Many farm organizations and agribusinesses are providing assistance and there is room for more.
I think you'll find Michael very well-spoken and you might want to consider him for your next conference as a speaker.
This week's program features interviews from the 2019 Water for Food Global Conference. Here is the list of who you will hear:
Overview interview of the conference with Peter McCornick, Executive Director, Water for Food Institute
Interview with Mark Edge, Director of Collaborations for Developing Countries, Bayer
Interview with the Irrigation Association: Deborah Hamlin, CEO, Irrigation Association; Brent Mecham, Industry Development Director, Irrigation Association; Aric Olson, President, Jain Irrigation
Interview with Conference attendee Grace Mukarusagara, Rwanda
Interview with Conference attendee Elisa Zancanaro Zanella, Brazil