National Chamber Foundation Series Highlights Innovation in Agriculture

National Chamber Foundation Series Highlights Innovation in Agriculture

 

Agriculture has evolved over the past few decades to meet a variety of the world population’s needs and demands and has not gone unheeded. On December 19, 2012, the National Chamber Foundation’s (NCF) Business Horizons Series focused on “Agriculture: Growing Innovation and Opportunities.” Among the speaker’s was U.S. Secretary Thomas Vilsack.

“Agriculture decided to change, decided to transform, decided to embrace innovation, decided to become multidimensional instead of two dimensional, to extend beyond crop production and livestock and begin a process of focusing on specialty crops and niche market opportunities, developing fuel and energy crops and committing itself in a very significant way to conservation and the outdoor recreational opportunities that that creates,” said Secretary Vilsack.

Secretary Vilsack also introduced the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new website: Rural America: New Markets, New Understandings and Unlimited Opportunity. The Secretary explained the tremendous opportunity we have today to create new markets in four areas:

  • Production Agriculture
  • Local and Regional Food Systems
  • Conservation
  • Biobased Economy

The site highlights USDA’s role in creating markets for advanced biofuels from non-food, non-feed sources, creating infrastructure and interagency work that has increased the use of advanced biofuels.

Released just the day before, December 18, 2012, was the National Chamber Foundation report “Agricultural Abundance: An American Innovation Story.” The report’s “From Farm to Table… and Way, Way Beyond” focuses on a variety of ways biobased products are being used in the U.S. Including:

  • Research from the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization
  • Ford Motor Company’s use of soy-foam in its vehicles
  • NuVention Solutions’ use of hog manure in asphalt
  • Coca-Cola’s plant bottle
  • Biobased products used by the U.S. military

According to the report: “All of these technologies and innovations and many more promise to enhance the human condition. They do so by lowering the cost of satisfying basic necessities; creating valuable new goods and new markets; improving our subjective and aesthetic experiences; and by satisfying the demands of a growing global population, one with a rising, aspirational middle class.”

Click to download the full NCF Agriculture report.

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