Dana Peterson, the former CEO for the National Association of Wheat Growers, kicked off the Executive Women in Agriculture Conference today in Chicago. She highlighted three drivers of agriculture that attendees needed to keep in mind as they plan for the future.
Globalization and consumers, technology, and politics and government are the key drivers of agriculture, Peterson said.
With the population increasing and expected to reach 9 billion by 2050 and the rise in incomes, diets around the world are changing. This will continue to build demand for agricultural products, Peterson pointed out. Farmers must use technology to manage information and people, she says.
There’s information technology and production technology. As farmers and businessmen, we must take advantage of the technology we have access to, added the Smith Center, Kan., native.
In terms of politics, Peterson said the representatives being sent to Washington have an "objective to win...regardless." She asked attendees to examine how this attitude might affect business on the farm.
"The effects on agriculture are global as many developing countries see agriculture as a way up," she explained. "In the long-term, this means stiffer competition. Farmers need to think about what they do best and hone in on it."
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