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Governor's Forum on Colorado Agriculture focuses on innovation


The critical role of innovation to the future of U.S. agriculture was the focus of the "Governor's Forum on Colorado Agriculture" on Feb. 14 in Denver. The forum, called "Cultivating Innovation: Creating Ideas for the Future," challenged attendees to think about the need for innovation when considering a future with a growing demand for food production with less land and water

"The agricultural community continues to face challenges but through innovation and productive dialogue, we hope to meet these challenges head-on to feed a growing world population," said Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture John Salazar.

State and national leaders discussed a renewed commitment to innovation and its importance to the food system. Such calls for agricultural innovation come as farmers and ranchers are challenged to double food production by 2050 in order to feed a world population expected to top 9 billion people--while also conserving environmental resources and improving food safety.

"Ranchers and farmers have always been some of our country's greatest innovators, entrepreneurs and conservationists," said Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. "Healthy working lands are the backbone of our economy, and we have many opportunities and challenges ahead to ensure agriculture continues to thrive in the 21st century."

Additional speakers included Gov. John Hickenlooper; Undersecretary Michael Scuse, USDA Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services; Tony Frank, president, Colorado State University; Michael Raynor, director, Deloitte Consulting LLP; Leann Saunders, president, Where Food Comes From, Inc.; and Craig Beyrouty, Dean of the College of Ag Sciences, Colorado State University.

The 22nd annual forum is co-hosted by the Colorado Department of Agriculture and Colorado State University.

A recording of the morning session can be found at

Additional information on the Forum can be found at

Date: 2/25/2013


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