WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns has announced that the 83rd annual Outlook Forum, "Agriculture at the Crossroads: Energy, Farm & Rural Policy," will focus on bioenergy and its implications for agriculture.

The conference will be held March 1-2, 2007, at the Crystal Gateway Marriott Hotel in Arlington, Va.

"USDA's 2007 Forum will consider the outlook for renewable energy and the enormous opportunity it represents for agriculture and rural America," said Johanns. "Perspectives on the next farm bill will also be featured during the two day event."

The Forum is an opportunity to hear, meet and debate with leaders and colleagues who are at the forefront of the bold changes occurring in agriculture. USDA has invited four of America's leading CEOs to a panel discussion on "Renewable Energy - Inroads to Agriculture" that Scott Kilman of the Wall Street Journal will moderate. The keynote address will be delivered by Secretary Johanns.

A distinguished guest speaker will join over 100 speakers and moderators, including agricultural producers and other experts from industry and government, associations, and the media. The Forum also presents 35 sessions, including the outlook for major U.S. commodities.

Pre-registration is required to attend the Forum. More details and registration are online. Registration is $300 per person until Feb. 5. After Feb. 5, registration is $350.

SOURCE: USDA news release.