Cultivating Collaboration for Sustainable Food Systems - Food Dialogues

November 14th from 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Mineral Hall B

Sustainable Ag Summit Panel

Event Details

November 14th from 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Mineral Hall B

Cultivating Collaboration for Sustainable Food Systems

U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance believes that farmers and ranchers are THE change agents. They are the solution to enhanced sustainability practices and varying climate patterns. But how many other companies, retailers or CPGs truly understand the current practices farmers are employing, and their potential for the future? In our breakout session, farmers representing various commodities will discuss the importance of communication and collaboration, working towards a shared goal of a better tomorrow. Within these walls we are partners, but we want to ensure the conversation continues.

Let’s be more effective, together. Come to our session and help co-create a strategy across all commodities, for and with the farmer, that places farmers and ranchers are at the forefront of sustainability conversations.

Moderator:

Erin Fitzgerald

Erin Fitzgerald serves as CEO of the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA), a farmer and rancher led organization committed to encouraging stakeholder and consumer dialogue about how food is grown and raised. Fitzgerald’s thought leadership in the sustainability space convenes food and agriculture stakeholders in an inclusive dialogue on the sustainable food systems of the 21st century.

Lisa Moldan

Lisa Moldan is a grow-finish field representative for Wakefield Pork of Southern Minnesota. In addition to supervising the daily functions of contract pig farmers, she oversees auditing procedures and assists with marketing logistics. Lisa also works with the training and development of future leaders in the Wakefield system. She and her husband Nate have two children and together raise pigs, corn, and soybeans on their fourth-generation family farm.

Cassidy Johnston

Cassidy Johnston is a cattle rancher with her husband and children in southeastern New Mexico. Cassidy grew up in a suburb of Denver and graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a degree in Environmental Studies. She is passionate about connecting ranchers and farmers with consumers and retailers to help them learn more about where their food comes from. Cassidy believes that transparency and forging connections between all parts of the supply chain is integral for the future of agriculture. 

Jerry Wilkins

Jerry Wilkins is the Sales and Marketing Director for Morning Fresh Farmers, a family-owned Colorado egg company. Jerry earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a Master of Science in Marketing from the University of Colorado at Denver. Prior to working in the egg industry, Wilkins honed his food career in the retail grocery sector with Albertsons, Inc. and in foodservice sales as an account manager with Sysco Foods of Denver. Jerry is the Vice-President of the Colorado Egg Producers Association, Past-Chairman of the American Egg Board’s Consumer Marketing Committee and Egg-Innovation Task Force.

Lauren Biegler

Crop farming has always been a large part of Lauren’s life. She grew up on a farm, studied agriculture in college and have worked for several large agriculture businesses in sales and marketing roles. Currently, Lauren grows corn and soybeans with her husband and three children, and also has a custom cover crop business in Lake Wilson, MN. Lauren is also a volunteer for CommonGround Minnesota where she answers questions about how food is grown and raised.