Florida Agricultural Policy Outlook Conference
Thursday March 2, 2023
UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research & Education Center
The UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department is pleased to announce the 8th Annual Florida Agricultural Policy Outlook Conference to examine critical policy issues facing Florida agribusiness leaders and explore valuable economic insight helpful for making informed business and policy decisions.
Conference Presentation and Discussion Topics
The 8th Annual Florida Ag Policy conference will cover topics such as State, Federal and International Agriculture Policy, Farm Bill, Crop Outlooks, Water Policy and Fertilizer recommendations.
9 AM - Registration
9:15 AM - Opening Remarks
- Scott Angle, University of Florida Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources and administrative leader of UF/IFAS
- Lisa House, Chair, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
In the morning, we will cover International, Federal, and State-Level Agricultural Policy and the Upcoming Farm Bill.
- 9:45 AM - John Walt Boatright, Director of Government Affairs, American Farm Bureau Federation
- 10:15 AM - Courtney Larkin, - Director of State Legislative Affairs, Florida Farm Bureau Federation
- 11 AM - Dr. John Newton, Chief Economist, US Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry
- 11:30 AM - Dr. Suzanne Thornsbury, Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department & Dr. Keith Fuglie, Economist, USDA Economic Research Service
12 PM - Closing of Morning Session
- Dr. Jack Rechcigl, Center Director and Professor, UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center
12:15 - 1:15 PM - Lunch Break
This year, we will run two concurrent afternoon sessions on the topics of production and environmental and economic management.
Production Economic Speakers Include:
- 1:15 PM: Dr. Marisa Zansler, Director of Economic and Market Research, Florida Department of Citrus – Citrus Outlook
- 1:45 PM: Dr. Zhengfei Guan, Associate Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department – Vegetables and Berries Outlook
- 2:30 PM: Dr. Trent Blare, Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department – Tropical Fruits Outlook
Environmental and Economic Management Speakers Include:
- 1:15 PM: Dr. Olesya Savchenko, Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department – Incentivizing Conservation Practices
- 1:45 PM: Dr. Tara Wade, Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department – Conservation Practices Adoption
- 2:30 PM: Dr. Weizhe Weng, Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department – Freshwater Conservation
3 p.m. - Final thoughts and conference evaluation
Speakers - Morning Session
Dr. J Scott Angle - Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS)
J. Scott Angle is a national leader in developing the science that supports food production and management of natural resources. As the Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources at UF/IFAS, he champions public science as a path to improve lives and reduce human suffering. His accomplished career in government, non-profit international development, and academia informs an approach to leadership based on service, partnership, and drive for impact. An innovator who holds seven patents, Angle has successfully guided multiple organizations through budget shortfalls and other challenges. Angle now leads nearly 2,300 employees who work in all 67 Florida counties.
Dr. J Scott Angle - VIDEO
Dr. Lisa House - Professor and Department Chair, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
Dr. Lisa House is Professor and Department Chair in the Food and Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida. She also serves as Co-Director of the Florida Agricultural Market Research Center. Prior to taking over as Chair in 2018, she held a teaching and research appointment, teaching classes in food and agribusiness marketing and management, survey research for economists, and comparative world agriculture. Dr. House earned her B.S. in Food and Resource Economics from the University of Florida, followed by M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Agricultural Economics from Kansas State University. In research, Dr. House has received grants totaling over $15 million to research subjects such as consumer acceptance of genetically modified foods, demand for seafood products, perception of fruits and vegetables, and the role of social networks in new food product adoption.
Dr. Lisa House - VIDEO
Dr. Jack Rehcigl - Professor and Center Director, UF/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center
Dr. Jack Rechcigl is the Center Director and Professor at the University of Florida/IFAS Gulf Coast Research and Education Center in Balm and Plant City. He is also the Center Director for Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center. Dr. Rechcigl studies the beneficial uses of organic wastes and industrial by-products as fertilizers for agricultural crops. Specifically, his research focuses on evaluating the fertilizer requirements of pasture grasses as well as determining ways to reduce fertilizer runoff into water ways.
Dr. Jack Rehcigl - VIDEO
Dr. Suzanne Thornsbury - Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
Dr. Suzanne Thornsbury joined the Food and Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida in August 2022 as a Professor in Agriculture Policy and Specialty Crops. Her extension and research program is focused on innovation in agriculture and food, and federal policy. Prior to joining UF, Dr. Thornsbury was a Senior Advisor for Agriculture Economics and Rural Communities in USDA’s Office of the Chief Scientist. She previously served as the Branch Chief for Crops in the Markets and Trade Economics Division of USDA’s Economic Research Service where she provided leadership for a research and outlook program to assess crop markets and trade.
Dr. Fuglie & Dr. Thornsbury - VIDEO
Dr. Fuglie & Dr. Thornsbury - SLIDES
John Walt Boatright - Director of Government Affairs, American Farm Bureau Federation
John Walt Boatright is Director of Government Affairs for American Farm Bureau, handling farm labor and specialty crop issues, including pesticides and food safety. In this role, John Walt manages relationships with the U.S. Congress and federal regulatory agencies on behalf of the organization’s nearly 6 million members. Prior to joining American Farm Bureau in November 2022, he led national affairs for Florida Farm Bureau for over 5 years. John Walt graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Food and Resource Economics from the University of Florida in 2013.
Dr. Boatright - VIDEO
Dr. Boatright - SLIDES
Courtney Larkin - Director of State Legislative Affairs, Florida Farm Bureau Federation
Courtney Larkin - VIDEO
Courtney Larkin - SLIDES
Dr. John Newton - Chief Economist for US Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry
Newton serves as Chief Economist for the United States Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry for Ranking Member John Boozman of Arkansas. As Chief Economist, Newton is responsible for advising the Ranking Member on economic and policy issues impacting the agricultural, nutrition, and forestry sectors. Newton has served agriculture in a number of capacities over the last two decades including several roles within the U.S. Department of Agriculture and as a two-time award-winning faculty member at the University of Illinois. Most recently, prior to joining the committee, Dr. Newton served as the Chief Economist for the American Farm Bureau Federation. In 2021, Newton received the distinguished alumni award from The Ohio State University. Newton is a Kentucky native and holds two Master’s degrees and a Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. Newton, his wife, and their daughter live in Washington, DC.
Dr. John Newton - VIDEO
Dr. John Newton - SLIDES
Dr. Keith Fuglie - Economist, USDA Economic Research Service
Keith Fuglie is an economist with the Structure, Technology, and Productivity Branch in the Resource and Rural Economics Division. His work focuses on the economics of agricultural technical change, science policy, and productivity growth. Since joining ERS in 1992, he has served as senior economist for agriculture and natural resources on the White House Council of Economic Advisers in 1997-98, and in 2020–21 he was on detail with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Bureau of Food Security. Keith also interrupted his career at ERS to spend nearly 10 years with the International Potato Center (CIP), where he was based in Asia and Africa and conducted studies on agricultural development.
Dr. Fuglie & Dr. Thornsbury - VIDEO
Dr. Fuglie & Dr. Thornsbury - SLIDES
Speakers - Production Economics Afternoon Session
Dr. Marisa Zansler - Director of Economic and Market Research Department, Florida Department of Citrus
Dr. Marisa Zansler is the Director of Economic and Market Research Department at the Florida Department of Citrus with nearly 20 years of experience in conducting and managing economic research and policy analysis of plant health management programs. She also serves as the Chief Economist to the Florida Citrus Commission. She is responsible for overseeing the collection, analysis and reporting of economic and market research data. She earned a Ph.D. in Food and Resource Economics from the University of Florida in 2004. She also holds a B.A. in Political Science, a B.S. in Ag Business, and a M.S. in Ag Economics from Louisiana State University. She currently resides in Gainesville, FL.
Dr. Marisa Zansler - VIDEO
Dr. Marisa Zansler - SLIDES
Dr. Zhengfei Guan - Associate Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
Dr. Zhengfei Guan is an Associate Professor in the Food and Resource Economics Department at UF. His research interests include production economics/farm management, trade, labor, and quantitative methods. His current efforts revolve around agribusiness coping strategies under changing production, market, and policy environments. His program goal is to help producers address production, labor, and trade challenges at both farm level and market level. Guan’s work has been presented to the White House, members of Congress and the Senate, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), the U.S. Department of Commerce (USDC), and the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) to inform policy making. He has testified at USTR and USITC hearings on trade of seasonal and perishable products.
Dr. Zhengfei Guan - VIDEO
Dr. Zhengfei Guan - SLIDES
Dr. Trent Blare - Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Tropical Research and Education Center
Dr. Trent Blare is an Assistant Professor in the Food and Resource Economics Department. Prior to joining TREC, Trent was a Markets and Value Chain Specialist in the CGIAR international agricultural research system for six years with the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) in Lima, Peru and the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) in Texcoco, Mexico. Dr. Blare graduated with his Ph.D. in Food in Resource Economics from the University of Florida in 2014. Dr. Blare’s extension and research program is comprised of two components. The first examines the potential for south Florida growers to expand their current markets and gain access to new ones for fruits, vegetables, and ornamental plants. The second area of Dr. Blare’s program uses non-market valuation methods to place a dollar value on south Florida’s natural resources such as waterways, protected areas, and clean air, that inherently do not have a market value.
Dr. Trent Blare - VIDEO
Dr. Trent Blare - SLIDES
Speakers - Environmental and Economic Management Afternoon Session
Dr. Olesya Savchenko - Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
Dr. Olesya Savchenko is an Assistant Professor of Agricultural Economics and Policy in the Food and Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida. She earned her Ph.D. in applied economics from the University of Illinois and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Delaware’s Center for Experimental and Applied Economics. Dr. Savchenko is affiliated with the UF Water Institute, the UF Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants, and is a fellow at the Center for Behavioral and Experimental Agri-Environmental Research, a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Center of Excellence. Dr. Savchenko’s research uses experimental economics methods and non-market valuation techniques to quantify the impact of human behavioral changes on natural systems and to evaluate and inform agri-environmental policies.
Dr. Olesya Savchenko - VIDEO
Dr. Olesya Savchenko - SLIDES
Dr. Tara Wade - Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Southwest Florida Research and Education Center
Dr. Tara Wade is an Agricultural Resource Economist in the Food and Resource Economics Department and the Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC) at the University of Florida. She specializes in determining the economic factors that affect choices to adopt environmentally benign agricultural practices. Her research interests are costs of ecosystem services, conservation policy design, and climate change adaptation. Dr. Wade’s extension and research programs focus on helping farmers to reach their economic and conservation goals in efficient ways. Prior to working at SWFREC. Dr. Wade was a Postdoctoral Research Associate with North Carolina A&T State University and the USDA Economic Research Service. There she specialized in the economic factors that affect farmers’ choices to adopt conservation practices. Dr. Wade received a master’s in Mathematics and a Ph.D. in Energy and Environmental Systems and Economics from North Carolina A&T State University.
Dr. Tara Wade - VIDEO
Dr. Tara Wade - SLIDES
Dr. Wezhe Weng - Assistant Professor, UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department
Dr. Weizhe Weng is an Assistant Professor and Extension Economist in the Food & Resource Economics Department at the University of Florida (UF), Institute of Food & Agricultural Sciences (IFAS). Her research interests include environmental and natural resource economics, valuation of ecosystem services, water policy, and coupled human and natural systems. Dr. Weng is a member of the Florida climate smart agriculture work group and has experience working across multiple disciplines. Dr. Weng’s current research and extension projects involve estimating the economic values of Florida’s water resources, building a cost-effective nutrient management program, taking a science-based approach to guide actions to transform agri-food systems towards green and climate resilient practices. Dr. Weng holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Virginia Tech.
Dr. Wezhe Weng - VIDEO
Dr. Wezhe Weng - SLIDES