April 05, 2007

SIUC to host Agriculture Industry Day on April 21

by K.C. Jaehnig

CARBONDALE, Ill. — A talk on major issues facing the food and agriculture industries, in-depth instruction on topics that range from caring for the home landscape to growing grapes and picking wines, and the traditional free beef and pork barbecue make up the program for this year's Agriculture Industry Day at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

It all begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, April 21, at the University Farms evaluation centers, 599 Rowden Road in Carbondale, with exhibits, refreshments and a 4-H and FFA judging contest.

After a brief welcome by Gary L. Minish, dean of SIUC's College of Agricultural Sciences,

Intercollegiate Athletics Director Mario L. Moccia will fill folks in on the latest in Saluki achievements.

Amanda L. Barczewski, a senior in agribusiness economics from DuBois, will talk about her experience as an SIUC student, while Gregory W. Webb, vice president of public affairs for Archer Daniels Midland, will tell the audience what made the University the right choice for him.

Philip Nelson, president of the Illinois Farm Bureau, will speak about upcoming challenges for food and agriculture at 11:30 a.m.

After the noon barbecue, provided by the Illinois Beef Association and the Illinois Pork Producers, the five two-hour educational clinics begin. Beginning at 1 p.m., they run simultaneously and finish at 3 p.m.

Guest "students" can learn about:

• Horsemanship from equine scientist Sheryl S. King, instructor Stephanie A. Speiser and herd forewoman Sheila R. Puckett;

• Lawns, trees and shrubs from turf specialist Kenneth L. Diesburg, horticulturist Paul H. Henry and forester John W. Groninger;

• Vines and wines from fruits expert Bradley H. Taylor;

• Livestock judging from Roger E. Hunsley, a former Purdue University coach whose teams won four national championships, and Eric Brunton, a senior agriculture major at Western Illinois University who has won two national judging contests and will be assisting the college as a coach when he starts graduate school at SIUC;

• Soybean pest management from plant pathologist Jason P. Bond and weed scientist Bryan G. Young.

Sponsors this year include Archer Daniels Midland, Farm Credit Services of Illinois, GROWMARK Inc., Helitech, the Illinois Beef Association, the Illinois Corn Marketing Board, the Illinois Farm Bureau, the Illinois Nurserymen's Association, Illinois Pork Producers Association, Monsanto Co., Prairie Farms, Scates Farms and The Maschhoffs Inc.

For more information, call 618/453-2469.