ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA, U.S. — The 2011 Purchasing and Ingredient Suppliers Conference (PISC), an annual three-day event of the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) concluded in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., this week where over 620 individuals working within the livestock feed and pet food industry gathered to learn about the latest issues, events and other matters. AFIA’s Purchasing and Ingredient Suppliers Committee has sponsored the annual event for many years.

The 2011 PISC, held March 2-4, began with opening remarks from Tanya Dowda, Land O’Lakes Purina Feed, followed by Al Gunderson, chairman of the IFEEDER Board of Trustees. The first day of PISC also included a domestic state of the agriculture industry outlook delivered by David Oppedahl of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

The international outlook was presented by expert panelists that included Eric Trachtenberg of USA Poultry & Egg Export Council; Matt McKnight of the U.S. Dairy Export Council and Paul Clayton of the U.S. Meat Export Federation. The domestic and international state of the industry presentations offered a general oversight that proceeded the detailed sessions following on the second day of PISC.

Day two of PISC offered a series of expert presentations on issues and topics affecting the industry. Richard Brock of Brock Associates opened with the grain outlook, while Dr. Art Douglas of Creighton University presented the long-term weather update.

Timothy Venverloh of Archer Daniels Midland and Tim Makens of Land O’Lakes Purina Feed comprised the sustainability panel focusing on what the feed industry should be prepared for in the coming years. Steve Kopperud of Policy Directions gave insight into the new Congress, and Dave Harlan of Cargill, Inc. presented on the integration of feed industry practices into the global food safety approach.

Day two of PISC ended with the producer panel, comprised of: Bob Krouse of Midwest Poultry Services, Frank Boyce of Shamrock Dairy and Brock Peterson of Belstra Group Farms. The producer panel was moderated by Trent Loos, of Loos Tales, who also delivered the closing remarks to end PISC 2011.

“I am continually impressed by the knowledge and positive attitudes PISC attendees bring to the table,” said Joel G. Newman, president and chief executive officer of AFIA. “We are in the midst of some of the greatest changes our industry has ever seen, and our members leave PISC energized and ready to tackle the challenges lying ahead.”

Earlier in the week, from Feb. 28 to March 2, AFIA’s Spring Committee Meetings provided time for many of the association’s committees to meet. The AFIA board of directors also met in conjunction with the committee meetings.

A highlight of the Spring Committee Meetings was the nutrition symposium, presented March 1 by the Nutrition Committee representing the AFIA Nutrition Member Interest Group. This pre-conference seminar was entitled “Feeding and Fueling the World: Impact of Advancements in Crop Genetics on Animal Nutrition and the Need for Real Time Nutrient Analysis.”

The afternoon-long seminar covered a variety of topics including the future of crop production, the demand for renewable fuels, meeting the food needs for the expanding global population and breeding technologies. Expert speakers addressing the topics included Michael Doane of the Monsanto Company, Dr. Todd Piper of Forage Genetics International, Dr. Eliot Herman of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, Dr. Jon Goodson of Evonik Degussa Corp and Dr. Fred Owens of Pioneer Hi-Bred International.

The 2012 Purchasing and Ingredients Suppliers Conference and Spring Committee Meetings will be held March 12-16 in Orlando, Florida, U.S. For more information,