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2017 Conference Panels and Presenters

Organic Farming – Challenges, Benefits and Legal Battles
8:35am – 9:20am

Presenters: Alison Howard, Homestead Farm; Kelley Poole, Vice President of Government Affairs, Organic Trade Association.

It has been an eventful year in organic farming. Panelists will discuss challenges and benefits of organic farming and the recent litigation filed against USDA pertaining to organic livestock and poultry standards.

Legal Resources for Improving Soil Health on Leased Land
9:20am – 10:00am

Presenters: Sarah Everhart, Senior Legal Specialist and Research Associate, ALEI, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law; Dr. Terron Hillsman, State Conservationist, USDA- Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

Improving soil health is a goal of the USDA-NRCS and many farmers across the state. Installing conservation practices to improve soil health on leased acres, however, can be challenging. Panelists will discuss the impediments to improving soil health on leased land and what resources are available to help farmers and landowners.

Break & Networking
10:00am – 10:15am

Nutrient Management Update and Preparing for an Audit
10:15am – 11:00am
Presenter: Hans Schmidt, Assistant Secretary for Resource Conservation, Maryland Department of Agriculture.

Nutrient management is at the intersection of agriculture and the environment in Maryland.This presentation will include an update on recent developments in Maryland’s Nutrient Management Program, and include a discussion of how growers can best prepare for a Nutrient Management records audit.

Administering Antibiotics to Livestock in Maryland: The Legal Framework

11:00am – 11:45am

Presenters: Dr. Michael Radebaugh, State Veterinarian, Maryland Department of Agriculture; Colby Ferguson, Government Relations Director, Maryland Farm Bureau; Betsy Nicholas, Esq., Executive Director, Waterkeepers Chesapeake, Founder, Fair Farms.

With the passage of the federal Veterinary Feed Directive and the state 2017 Keep Antibiotics Effective Act, livestock producers need to understand the new legal framework of administering antibiotics to their animals. Panelists will discuss the reasons behind these new laws and how producers can best navigate this new legal landscape.

Lunch :11:45am – 12:40pm

Maryland’s Climate Change Programs
12:40pm – 1:15pm

Presenter: Ben Grumbles, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment

Given the federal political landscape, state level action to combat climate change is viewed by some as more important than ever.This update will provide a quick rundown of what is happening in Maryland to fight climate change.

Keynote Panel: Conservation Programs and the 2018 Farm Bill

1:15pm – 2:10pm
Keynote Speakers: Representative, House Agriculture Committee, U.S. House of Representatives (invited, not confirmed); Paul Wolfe J.D., Senior Policy Specialist, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition; Matthew Teffeau, Director of Government Relations, MDA

As the 2018 Farm Bill begins to take shape many are speculating about the future of popular conservation programs such as the Conservation Reserve Program. Expert panelists will discuss what conservation programs they anticipate will be impacted by the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill and will field questions from conference attendees.

Developing Legal Issues in Agriculture and the Environment
2:10pm – 2:55am

Presenters: Paul Goeringer, Extension Legal Specialist, ALEI, Department of Agricultural and Resources Economics, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Maryland, College Park; Kelly Nuckolls Winslow, Extension Legal Specialist, ALEI, Department of Agricultural and Resources Economics, College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Maryland, College Park

The panelists will highlight this year’s developing legal issues in agricultural and environmental law from courtroom decisions, law, and policy and will let attendees know what issues to watch in 2018.

Closing Remarks
2:55pm – 3:00pm
Moderator: Professor Michael Pappas