Highlights from Monday’s USFRA Food Dialogue

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The U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) convened a panel of experts from multiple disciplines, including farmers, media, industry and academia, to answer some of the toughest questions surrounding GMOs on Monday. This discussion was moderated by CNBC Senior Analyst and Financial Industry Expert Ron Insana at The Food Dialogues: Chicago, which took place during the 2013 BIO International Convention.

During the panel, "The Straight Story on Biotech in Agriculture: The Media and its Impact on Consumers," panelists addressed what more can be done to give consumers access to important information about the use of biotech seeds (GMOs) in agriculture.

"The Food Dialogues is a signature event series that was designed by USFRA to answer the tough questions about agriculture," said Bob Stallman, USFRA chairman and president of the American Farm Bureau Federation.

"Biotechnology is a topic that many people have questions about and it's important that USFRA provides sources of information to consumers - whether at events like today's The Food Dialogues panel or online on our Facebook page and website. We look forward to our next event in Chicago where we'll look at the topic of transparency." 

The panel discussion, which streamed live online, was moderated by Ron Insana and featured opening remarks from Congressman Rodney Davis (R-Illinois) and Robert Flider, acting director of the Illinois Dept. of Agriculture. Panelists included:

•Dr. Bob Goldberg, plant molecular biologist currently using genomics to identify all of the genes required to "make a seed," UCLA

•Emily Anthes, journalist and author, Frankenstein's Cat

•Jerry Slocum, Mississippi soybean farmer

•Melinda Hemmelgarn, M.S., R.D., freelance writer, speaker, columnist and radio host, Food Sleuth

•Michael Olson, Producer/Host, Food Chain Radio

•Pam Johnson, Iowa corn farmer

•Steve Smith, Chairman, SaveOurCrops.Org

To watch a full replay of the panel discussion or for more information on GMOs and agriculture, or to register for The Food Dialogues: Chicago at Kendall College taking place on June 19, visit fooddialogues.com.


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