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AFIA Board of Directors makes concerns known

More than 40 members of the American Feed Industry Association's Board of Directors recently met to discuss issues of mutual concern and make their concerns known to their legislators.

The AFIA Board also welcomed a new chairman and 16 new directors and made several additions to the Executive Committee.

AFIA takes concerns to Capitol Hill

Board members took to Capitol Hill, pressing AFIA positions on proposed legislation and existing laws and regulations when they visited their respective members of Congress on May 12 and 13, 2009. Members were given the opportunity to discuss food and feed safety, speculative trading, energy and “card-check” policy issues and other topics.

The Board members met separately with leaders of the House Agriculture Committee—Chairman Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) and Rep. Frank Lucas (R-Okla.), the committee’s ranking member—during their time on Capitol Hill. Members of the Board also met with staff for House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), and they met with USDA Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Kathleen Merrigan.

Rittgers succeeds Orr

Brian Rittgers was elevated to the chairmanship of the country’s largest organisation representing the total feed industry at the meeting. Rittgers, the national sales manager of Elanco Animal Health’s Dairy Business Unit of Greenfield, Ind., succeeds Dr Don Orr, the president of JBS United of Sheridan, Ind.  The terms of chairman and past chairman are one year.

In related business, the Board voted to accept the nomination of Steven J. Van Roekel to become chairman-elect of the organization. Van Roekel, the president and CEO of Ridley, Inc. of Mankato, Minn., will succeed Rittgers in May 2010.

New additions to the Board, Executive Committee

The following individuals were elected to 3-year terms on the AFIA Board and began their service with the May Board meeting:
• Daniel Bercovici, Ajinomoto Heartland LLC, Chicago, Ill.
• Jeff Cannon, Diamond V Mills, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
• Mark Etienne, PCS Sales Feed Products, Northbrook, Ill.
• Rurik Halaby, AgriCapital Corporation, New York, N.Y.
• Guy Harari, Adisseo USA Inc., Alpharetta, Ga.
• Mike Horn, Pennfield Corporation, Lancaster, Pa.
• John Howe, Manna Pro Corporation, St. Louis, Mo.
• Palma Jordan, Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, St. Louis, Mo.
• Michael Laughlin, Cargill Animal Nutrition, Minneapolis, Minn.
• Michael Osborne, Nutra-Blend, LLC, Neosho, Mo.
• Rod Paulson, CHS Inc., Inver Grove Heights, Minn.
• Thomas Rossmanith, Abengoa Bioenergy Trading, Ravenna, Neb.
• Louis Russell, APC, Inc., Ankeny, Iowa
• Curt Siverling, Church & Dwight Company, Princeton, N.J.
• Ted Waitman, CPM, Waterloo, Iowa
• Patrick Whidden, Tennessee Farmers Cooperative, Lavergne, Tenn.

The following individuals joined AFIA’s Executive Committee:
• Kevin Fields, Blue Seal Feeds, Inc., Londonderry, N.H.
• Philip Greene, Foster Farms, Fresno, Calif.
• Michael Laughlin, Cargill Animal Nutrition, Minneapolis, Minn.
• Gerald May, P&G Pet Care, Lewisburg, Ohio
• James Moore, Southern States Cooperative, Richmond, Va.
• Mark Poeschl, North American Nutrition Companies, Inc., Lewisburg, Ohio
• Alan Wessler, MFA Incorporated, Columbia, Mo.

Other key issues before the Board

The AFIA Board of Directors voted to recognize and reform the Microbial, Enzyme and Forage Technology Committee into the Ingredient Approval and Definition Committee to reflect changes in the industry in recent years.

Board members also signaled their approval and support of the association’s recent formation of the Institute for Feed Education and Research, also known as IFEEDER. The mission of IFEEDER is to support educational and scientific research that addresses challenges facing the industry and develops opportunities for a sustainable, global feed industry. The AFIA Board voted to accept the nomination of Alan Gunderson, vice president of Vita Plus Corporation of Madison, Wis., to lead the foundation. He will lead IFEEDER with the aid of nine other members comprising a Board of Trustees. 

In addition, Dirk Maier of Kansas State University presented information about the university’s plans to expand its feed technology programme. Kansas State University has long offered degrees specific to the feed industry.

Related link:

American Feed Industry Association (AFIA)
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

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