Drought, record-high feed costs, changing consumer preferences and a growing global demand for protein have driven significant changes in the U.S. beef industry. With these trends in mind, the American Hereford Association (AHA) is planning a Hereford Genetic Summit Sept. 4-5 in Springfield, Mo., where Hereford enthusiasts can gather and engage in meaningful discussions about the industry, the inherent strengths and weaknesses of the Hereford breed, and the actions necessary to position the breed for continued growth.
With the theme “Get on Board, Navigate Your Future,” the Summit will include informative, educational presentations, small group discussions, audience participation, and, of course, entertainment and fun. The day-and-a-half conference program will include some of the most influential speakers in the beef industry.
The event will be hosted at Missouri State University’s Darr Agricultural Center/Bond Learning Center in Springfield.
Kevin Ochsner, agribusiness consultant and host of National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s “Cattlemen to Cattlemen,” will facilitate the program. Other industry leaders will discuss the basics of consumer demand, what is driving beef industry economics, how Herefords fit in the commercial industry today and the role of a seedstock producer. The program will be both thought provoking and challenging as breeders and Association staff plan for the future of the Hereford breed. The event will also include time for some fun and social interaction with a “Hereford tailgate party” Thursday night and an evening on Table Rock Lake aboard the Showboat Branson Belle on Friday evening.
A Certified Hereford Beef (CHB®) culinary class will be offered as a program option on Friday morning. The class will feature Flavio Ribeiro, Brazilian meat scientist, along with Andrew Brooks, CHB LLC director of marketing, sharing some CHB cooking and food preparation tips along with wine pairing.
A highlight Friday evening on the Showboat Branson Belle will be an auction benefiting the Hereford Research Foundation (HRF). A variety of unique items and opportunities will be up for bid.
Early-bird registration is available until July 15. Until then, individuals can save $50 and register for $150 and couples pay $200. From July 15 to Aug. 11, single registration will be $200 and $300 for couples. After Aug. 11, including at the door, registration fees will be $250 for a single individual and $350 for a couple.