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Slideshow: Producers gather for education and celebration at AFGC’s 75th convention

Progressive Forage Editor Lynn Jaynes Published on 05 February 2019

In preparation for the 75th celebration of American Forage and Grassland Council’s (AFGC) beginnings, producers were surveyed to find out what forage practices had changed or been adopted – and there were surprises.

“It was surprising that ‘conversion to stockpiling’ wasn’t in the top five,” said University of Georgia’s forage specialist, Dennis Hancock. “Another surprise was that ‘conversion to novel-endophyte fescue’ wasn’t in the top five.” Both practices have been a main educational and research focus for university extension centers in the last 10 years, but he noted the adoption rates among producers are still low.

“It’s kind of like me knowing what would make me healthy – diet and exercise. But do I do that? We probably know how to farm better than what we’re doing. So I think some factors like that come into play. Even though [producers] know these are good practices, they’re not always adopting them,” said John Jennings, forage and livestock specialist from University of Arkansas.

In a day and age when organizations across all walks of life – business, religious and professional – struggle to maintain membership and focus, the American Forage and Grassland Council (AFGC) has succeeded to do more than endure. At its 75th celebration, members demonstrated and celebrated its progression and dedication to the forage industry.

One of the strengths of the organization is bringing in young people to foster their interest in the forage industry. A popular annual competition, the National Forage Bowl, brings in university teams; this year’s winner was the team from University of Wisconsin – River Falls, coached by forage specialist Dr. Yoana Newman. Poster presentations are also a popular feature of the conference, highlighting current research in the industry.

Other highlights of the conference included the publication of The First 75 Years, a history book of the organization to date, and the announcement that AFGC has been selected as the host organization for the International Grassland Council, which will be held in Covington, Kentucky, in 2023.

See a photo slideshow of the event below. And watch for more information coming soon on National Forage Week, to be held June 16-22. Check out the AFGC website for more information.  end mark

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