A world-renowned expert on biotechnology, an award-winning country music singer and a Fox News political commentator are on the agenda when Alabama Farmers Federation members gather for the 95th Annual Meeting Dec. 4-5 in Montgomery.
Author and international speaker Mark Lynas will highlight Monday’s Ag Issues Briefing. A former anti-GMO (genetically modified organism) activist, Lynas will share how science led him to become a biotechnology advocate.
“As a scientist, you must have data to back up what you’re saying,” Lynas told American Farm Bureau Federation members at their annual convention in January. “And I realized I wasn’t holding myself to the same scientific standards on GMOs as I applied to my research on climate change. You can’t pick and choose where you use science to back up your argument. You have to be consistent.”
Lynas’ talk will kick off an educational campaign by the Federation to help farmers better explain modern agricultural practices — particularly the use of GMOs — to the general public.
“People need a believable source of information. As farmers, you have credibility because you understand what you’re doing and why. You can explain the real benefits GM crops have for both the land and consumers,” said Lynas, who lives in Oxford, England.
The annual meeting begins Sunday with policy meetings, exhibits, a silent auction benefiting the Alabama Farmers Agriculture Foundation (AFAF) and a general session featuring the Federation video annual report.
That evening, members will join other country-music fans for a Sara Evans concert, promoted by Alfa Insurance. Evans’ breakthrough album in 2000, “Born to Fly” was followed by a string of hits, including her most successful single, “Suds in the Bucket.” She is working on her eighth studio album.
Monday’s annual meeting activities begin early with an AFAF breakfast and live auction. Outstanding county leaders will be recognized at a second general session, and state board of directors and officers will be elected during a voting delegate session.
FarmPAC2018 contributors are invited to a reception with keynote speaker Dana Perino before the closing general session. Perino is co-host of FOX News The Five. She previously served as White House Press Secretary for President George W. Bush.
Other annual meeting highlights include the final four Discussion Meet contest; presentation of prizes to the Outstanding Young Farm Family and Excellence in Agriculture winner; and recognition of Service to Agriculture Award winner Dennis Evans, who was director of the Alabama Agriculture and Forestry Leaders Program at Auburn University.
Visit AlfaFarmers.org for more annual meeting information.