Governor Deal to Speak at Georgia Farm Bureau 80th Convention December 4th

Staff Report From Georgia CEO

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

Georgia Farm Bureau members will gather on Jekyll Island for the organization’s 80th annual meeting Dec. 3-5. Gov. Nathan Deal, U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Dist. 1) and Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black will address convention attendees during the general session on Dec. 4 between 8:30 a.m. and noon.
“Georgia Farm Bureau has advocated for Georgia’s farmers and rural communities for eighty years. Our annual convention is a time for our members to network, get updates on ag issues and determine the positions our organization will take next year on the issues impacting their farms and rural communities,” GFB President Gerald Long said. “We’re honored to have Gov. Nathan Deal, Rep. Buddy Carter and Commissioner Gary Black speak to us during our general session on Monday morning. Their presence at our convention shows they value the $74.9 billion economic contribution agriculture makes to Georgia’s economy.”
Convention activities begin on Dec. 3 at the Jekyll Island Convention Center with registration at 10 a.m. The trade show, featuring booths from many of Georgia’s agricultural organizations and agencies, will be open from 11 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. GFB and the Georgia Department of Agriculture are hosting a reception from noon to 4 p.m. showcasing GFB’s Certified Farm Markets and Georgia-grown commodities.
During the Celebrating Agricultural Literacy event, from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., GFB will recognize efforts by county Farm Bureaus to educate students about agriculture through the Ag in the Classroom program. The recipient of the 2017 Georgia Agriculture in the Classroom Teacher of the Year Award will be named at this time.
The first day of the convention will close with a worship service at 4:30 p.m. that will include a memorial for county Farm Bureau presidents who died this year.
On Dec. 4 the trade show will be open from 7:30 a.m. until noon, and the general session begins at 8:30 a.m. Rep. Carter, Gov. Deal, and Commissioner Black will speak, and GFB President Long will deliver his annual address.
A series of four public policy educational sessions will be held from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. Each session will be held twice concurrently. publisher Charlie Harper will provide a political outlook for the 2018 elections. UGA Professor of Agricultural and Applied Economics Jeffrey Dorfman will give an economic forecast for Georgia’s major crops. Tate Bennett with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Mark Masters with the Georgia Water Planning and Policy Center, and Marjie Dickey, Georgia Environmental Protection Division agriculture water project manager, will discuss environmental issues Georgia farmers are facing.            
Dr. Sam Pardue, dean of the UGA College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences, and Dr. Lisa Nolan, dean of the UGA College of Veterinary Medicine, will give updates on the education and research programs at their schools.
The second day will conclude with an awards ceremony beginning at 4:30 p.m. to recognize counties and individuals selected as state winners for various programs completed during the past year to promote agriculture.
On Dec. 5 GFB voting delegates will discuss and approve policy resolutions submitted by county Farm Bureau chapters statewide. The resolutions approved by the delegates will become the organization’s official policy and will guide its legislative efforts in 2018. Delegates will also elect the 2018 GFB Board of Directors.