Third Annual Farms at the Table Conference Underway
(SASKATOON, SK) More than 150 industry leaders, farmers, ranchers, dietitians and communicators are gathering this evening for this year's Farms At The Table conference in Saskatoon. The annual event explores ways to encourage public trust in food and farming.
"Today, less than 2% of Canadians have a direct link to the farm," says Clinton Monchuk, Executive Director of Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan, which organizes the conference. "Naturally, consumers have lots of questions about how their food is produced. However, with a click of a mouse these days, people can consult all kinds of 'experts' through Google, Facebook, blogs and Twitter. That makes it more important than ever for all of us in agriculture to share the 'real dirt' on farming."
The conference kicks off tonight with a 'Table Talk' discussion panel which will contemplate communications in a time of shifting trust. Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan has invited three media and food industry representatives to talk about communicating effectively in a time when trust in mainstream media is low-and when more people than ever find their news on Facebook.
Featured speakers on tonight's panel include:
- Andy Vance, a journalist, media expert and compelling storyteller, will discuss the often distinct perspectives of farmers and consumers.
- Dr. Shannon Hood-Niefer, a food scientist with the Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre, will talk about growing trends in food innovation and what food companies are demanding today.
- John Gormley, a well-known Saskatchewan broadcaster, lawyer and author, will weigh in on how consumers' opinions of food and farming have changed in the last decade.
- Allyson Perry, senior project manager with the US Centre for Food Integrity, will moderate the session and encourage audience participation in an interactive conversation about how we all communicate.
"It's important for the ag industry to think and to talk about what our message is," Monchuk explains. "This session will challenge everyone to bring their communications up to the next level."
The Table Talk session will be followed by an Evening Mixer Reception starting at 8:30 PM, sponsored by Great Western Brewing Company.
The conference continues on December 15 with a full line-up of impressive speakers, including Kevin Folta, John Scott, Crystal Mackay, Allison Perry, Shannon Meyers and Clinton Monchuk. The complete agenda is online: farmfoodcaresk.org.
For more information and to register visit farmfoodcaresk.org/events, or contact:
Executive Director, Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan
Office: 306.477.FOOD (3663)
Farm & Food Care Saskatchewan (FFC SK) is a whole-sector coalition made up of farm families, agribusinesses, food processors, restaurants, retailers, food companies and more. Together, we help tell the stories of the farmers who work hard to grow the fresh Saskatchewan food that we enjoy so much. FFC SK works to provide a coordinated effort and a unified voice, connecting farm gates to our dinner plates.