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UGA offers agribusiness conference Sept. 14 By April Reese Sorrow

The 2010 Agribusiness Conference, “Building Agribusiness Alliances,” will be held Sept. 14 and 15 at Athens Technical College in Athens, Ga.

The conference will include current, cutting-edge and relevant information for agribusiness owners. Time will also be provided for networking among business owners, local, state and federal service providers and members of the public.

The first day of the conference will be held from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. and include workshops and exhibits. Sessions are planned to help entrepreneurs learn the basics of building and sustaining agribusiness enterprises including regulations, resources and risk management. Participants will also learn about green power, renewable energy sources, rural economic development efforts and how to certify their farm as organic.

Georgia’s food safety regulations will also be reviewed. Marketing specialists from the University of Georgia Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development will discuss effective marketing strategies. They will also share free marketing resources, like Market Maker and Georgia Made Georgia Grown, and information on loans and financing programs.

The optional second day, Sept. 15, will feature business-to-business interviews that will allow participants to meet with procurement officers from local grocers and retailers. Tours of Athens-area agribusiness establishments are also planned. Tours and interviews will begin at 9 a.m. and end at noon.

Registration is $65 per person and includes lunch, breaks, informational materials and optional post-workshop interviews or tours. The fee is $125 per organization for exhibit space.

The conference is sponsored by the East Athens Development Corporation, the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development and the Georgia Department of Economic Development Tourism Product Development Team.

For more information or to register, visit the website www.areg.caes.uga.edu.

(April R. Sorrow is a science writer with the University of Georgia Public Affairs Office.)

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