A farm forum providing information on surviving through challenging economic times and raising livestock responsibly is planned for Aug. 26, 2009 at the Heartland Acres Agribition Center near Independence, IA.

“Farming Matters: Succeeding in a Changing Environment” is hosted by the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers (CSIF).

CSIF partnered with Farm Credit Services of America, Hog Slat, Kent Feeds, Pinnacle, Pioneer Hi-Bred International and the United Soybean Board to offer the forum to farmers at no charge.

Farming Matters will include a combination of general and concurrent sessions focusing on global economic trends, improving energy efficiency, enhancing farm biosecurity and better managing the volatility of input costs and market prices for long-term farm viability.

Experts will also provide thorough updates on all rules and regulations impacting livestock farmers.

Keynote address features Jim Wiesemeyer, senior vice president of Farm and Trade Policy with Informa Economics, providing a unique perspective on how leadership changes in Washington, DC, impact Iowa’s farmers.

State veterinarian David Schmitt will discuss biosecurity and how livestock mortality plays a role in the public’s perception of animal agriculture.

Anna Johnson of Iowa State University will discuss changes in consumer preferences and the importance of raising livestock responsibly.

Other speakers include Des Moines attorney Eldon McAfee representing the Iowa Pork Producers Association, Iowa Farm Bureau government relations counsel Chris Gruenhagen and Farm Credit Services of America Vice President Al Patten.

Deadline for registration is Aug. 19. To register, contact CSIF at (515) 225-5490 or (800) 932-2436.