Farmland Preservation Summit Feb. 5

Farmers, landowners, planners, local officials, land trust leaders, economic development professionals and anyone interested in preserving farmland in Ohio can take part in an annual farmland preservation summit Feb. 5 designed to gather local and national experts on the subject to promote methods to support this valuable natural resource, organizers said.

The 14th annual Ohio Farmland Preservation Summit is designed to help interested parties learn various techniques, tools and methods to preserve farmland, said Mike Hogan, an Ohio State University Extension educator and Sustainable Agriculture coordinator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).

During past farmland summits, experts have presented tools on legal ways for people to preserve farmland, he said. But this year, the summit will offer more information geared toward farmers and how they can preserve farmland, he said.

“The goal is to offer a more holistic approach, looking at the bigger issues in farmland preservation, including offering a program track for specifically for farmers,” Hogan said.

He said the summit also will focus on some of the larger, more important issues in Ohio right now, including:

• Preserving farmland with farm business succession planning

• Current trends in farmland preservation — What’s next and when is it coming to Ohio?

• Pipeline development in Ohio — The real natural gas challenge to farmland preservation

The summit is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will take place at Ohio State University’s Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Drive, just across from the Schottenstein Center on the Columbus campus.

The summit will feature opening remarks from Bruce McPheron, vice president for agricultural administration and CFAES dean. The event will also feature breakout sessions on a variety of topics, Hogan said, including natural resource conservation programs, taxation issues and farmland preservation, agriculture security areas, and farmland preservation 101.

The summit will also feature an exhibition space and a lunch featuring Ohio foods.

Registration is $50 and includes a continental breakfast and lunch. Deadline to register is Jan. 31. More details and online registration are available at http://Fairfield.osu.edu.

The summit is sponsored by OSU Extension, Farm Credit Services of Mid-America, Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, The Andersons and the Western Reserve Land Conservancy.

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