Agriculture is never a sure thing, says Vernon Langston, field scientist, range and pasture and industrial vegetation management, Dow AgroSciences, and president, Texas Plant Protection Association. Never has preparation been more important for Texas farmers and ranchers, and opportunities available at the annual TPPA conference may help them get ready for whatever comes next.
"This had been a challenging year, especially for agriculture. No one can accurately predict the future, but we all want to be as prepared as possible for that future,” Langston said. “Our theme for this year's meeting is ‘Facing Ag's Future.’ With that theme in mind, we designed our General Session to prepare, or at least gather information from, some of the experts on what Ag's future might be.”
Sessions will include presentations on the impact of international trade on Texas agriculture, ag communications now and the future, and an update on the new farm bill. “We will also have presentations on preparing the next generation of ag professionals and an environmentally responsible solution to your crop protection product container disposal problems.”
Conference breakout sessions will include water and crop management; fertility management; grain (corn, wheat, sesame and rice); horticulture and turf; cotton-crop production, cotton-genetics; and a range and pasture section.
“As you can see, our general session and our breakout sessions offer outstanding programs,” Langston said. “So please join us for this exciting meeting as we ‘Face Ag's Future’ together."
Other conference activities include a poster section, where researchers, including graduate students, can display information about their work. The graduate students also compete for cash prizes for the top three posters. Dale Mott is the 2012 Poster Chairman. Contact Dale at [email protected]  to enter a poster or for more information.
A pest identification contest, conducted by Dr. Barron Rector, offers an excellent session on pest ID and a challenge for farmers and consultants to gauge their knowledge of pests that plague Texas agriculture. The top three winners receive cash prizes.
Texas ranchers, farmers and others interested in attending the annual conference may review the agenda by clicking on: http://tppa.tamu.edu/ .
Many of the firms and organizations involved in agriculture will feature displays at the conference. The industry display area will be a major focal point, and coffee breaks and the Poster Session will all be in the display area.
Industry representatives may reserve a table-top display space on the registration form or online with a credit card. Conference sponsors or exhibitors to date include: MANA; Oro Agri, Inc.; DuPont Crop Protection’ AgraQuest; Dow AgroSciences; RiceTec, Inc.; US Ag Recycling; SFP; American Plant Food Corp.; Cheminova, Inc.; BASF Corp.; Gowan USA; Monsanto; Valent USA; Netafim USA; Simplot Grower Solutions; and Novozymes BioAg, Inc.
Southwest Farm Press is a co-sponsor of the TPPA annual conference.
For registration information check these links: http://tppa.tamu.edu/conferences/2012/doc_pdf/2012_reg_form.pdf  and http://tppa.tamu.edu/conferences/2012/pay_online/orderform.htm .
Conference registration fees ($85 by Nov. 16) cover the Fridayawards luncheon where the winners of 2012 TPPA awards are announced, along with the winners of the poster and pest ID contest. A TPPA business meeting follows the luncheon.