Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Food and Health Economics Workshop: Call for Papers

The Food and Health Economics Workshop will take place at the Toulouse School of Economics (TSE) June  7 and 8, 2018. The Food and Health Economics Workshop brings together researchers from around the world working in the field of Food and Health Economics.

The workshop provides a forum that encourages the development, critical appraisal and dissemination of methodological research related to food and health economics. In this regard empirical, theoretical and experimental papers will be selected on the basis of their contribution to the advance of the knowledge on the topic.

Contributions would address and answer key policy questions through rigorous economic analysis. Possible topics include obesity, malnutrition, non-communicable chronic diseases, nutritional transition, ex-ante and ex-post evaluation of food and/or nutritional policies, strategic role of food firms, food safety.

Dates and Venue: June 7 and 8, 2018, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE), France. 

Local Organizers: Céline Bonnet (TSE-R, INRA), Catarina Goulão (TSE-R, INRA), Vincent Réquillart (TSE-R, INRA). 

Scientific Committee: Timothy Beatty (U.C. Davis), John Cawley (U. Cornell), Helmuth Cremer (TSE-R), Pierre Dubois (TSE-R), Fabrice Etilé (INRA, PSE), Jayson Lusk (U. Purdue), Mario Mazzocchi (U.Bologna), Franco Sassi (Imperial College), Luigi Siciliani (U.York, UK) and local organizers. 

To Submit a Paper: The deadline to submit a research article is February 28, 2018. Preliminary versions of papers are accepted, but full papers will be given priority. Young researchers are especially encouraged to apply. Papers have to be sent to the following email address in pdf format:

Notifications of Acceptance: March 31, 2018.

Registration: April 30, 2018.

Format: The workshop is run over two days, and comprises around 15 papers. There are no parallel sessions and one hour is devoted to each paper, with presentations by the author and a formal discussant. The number of participants will be limited to around 50. Participants are expected to attend the whole of the meeting and play a role as author, discussant or chairperson.

Fees: Fees amount to 250 € VAT included (waived for speakers). Lunch and dinner are provided by the conference. 

All relevant information will be made available on the conference website in due time; If necessary, you may also contactthe local organizers at

Monday, November 13, 2017

Members in the News: Young, Hurt, Gray, Schwabe, McCarl, Zhang, and Mintert

Robert Young, American Farm Bureau Federation
Agriculture mergers won’t hinder consumer choices — they’ll better them
Written by: Robert Young in The Hill- November 4, 2017
When any of us look to buy things, we would probably prefer more choices to less. Our sense of increased competition is hard to shake.

Recent merger and consolidation activity in the agricultural input space has raised some justifiable concern among industry watchers, as well as farmers and ranchers. But keep in mind there are innovation-based market forces at work behind this recent spate.

Read the entire article on The Hill

Chris Hurt, Purdue University
INDIANA IN DEPTH: Farmers insist subsidies help despite controversy over program
By: News and Tribune and WTHI TV- November 4, 2017
In May, President Donald Trump proposed a budget that would slash farm subsidies by $38 billion, $28 billion of which would come from crop insurance for farmers, the most important program, according to Chris Hurt, a professor of agricultural economics at Purdue University.

Read the entire article on News and Tribune and WTHI TV

Allan Gray, Purdue University
Academy Helps Managers Tackle Marketplace Shifts
By: AgPro- November 7, 2017
Agricultural retail managers might not realize it, but they have a role in helping their organizations succeed in this arena, says Allan Gray, Purdue professor of agricultural economics and center director.

“The role of the retailer is changing,” says Gray, who is the faculty lead for the management academy. “Retailers are challenged with how to identify new production practices and systems that help farmers enhance their productivity while continuously improving their environmental footprint.”

Read the entire article on AgPro

Kurt Schwabe, Texas A&M University
Bruce McCarl, Texas A&M University
UCR-Texas A&M research team awarded $1.2 million NSF grant
By: The Highlander - November 6, 2017
The grant recipients are Professor of Environmental Economics and Policy Kurt Schwabe, Assistant Professor of Groundwater Hydrology Hoori Ajami and Professor of Soil Physics and water management specialist Laosheng Wu. The three UCR academics were joined by TAMU’s Professor of Agricultural Economics Bruce McCarl, Professor of Chemical Engineering Efstratios Pistikopoulos, Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering Rabi Mohtar and Professor of Biological and Agricultural Engineering and Ecosystem Sciences and Management Raghavan Srinivasan.

Read the entire article on The Highlander

Wendong Zhang, Iowa State University
How China hopes a transplanted Iowa farm will help transform its aging ag industry (and boost Iowa trade as well)
By: Des Moines Register- November 7, 2017
Wendong Zhang, an assistant economics professor at Iowa State University in Ames, is intimately familiar with that challenge. 

His grandfather’s village in coastal Shandong Province, just east of Hebei, packs 1,000 farmers onto fewer than 200 acres — a dense and old-fashioned production by hand compared with a mechanized American harvest. 

Read the entire article on Des Moines Register

James Mintert, Purdue University
Ag Economy Barometer: Producers more optimistic in October
By: Daily News - November 8, 2017
“One possible reason for the smaller share of producers planning to reduce fertilizer rates in 2018 is prices,” said James Mintert, director of Purdue’s Center for Commercial Agriculture and principal investigator on the barometer project. “Fertilizer prices, particularly for anhydrous ammonia, are lower than a year ago. For example, recent price quotes for anhydrous ammonia were 20 percent lower than a year ago, with other crop nutrient prices exhibiting smaller price declines.”

Read the entire article on Daily News

See other Member in the News items

Know another AAEA Member who has made statewide, national, or international news?
Send a link of the article to or 

What research and topics are you working on? Want to be an expert source for journalists working on a story? We want to hear from you. Contact Jay Saunders via email,

Thursday, November 9, 2017

AARES 2018 Annual Conference: Registration Open

February 6-9, 2018
The 2018 Annual AARES Conference will be held at the Adelaide Convention Centre on North Terrace in Adelaide, South Australia.

The venue is close to public transport and there are numerous hotels within a 2-3 minute walk. The airport is approximately 20 minutes by car.


Registrations are open. For information on the rates, workshops available, social functions and to register, head to the Registrations page.

Conference Program

The Organising Committee, in conjunction with the incoming AARES President-Elect, is working on an exciting program to make this conference an outstanding success and one not to be missed.
As the program is developed we will add particularly interesting or novel events to our Drawcard Events page.

Accommodation Options

Special conference rates have been negotiated at a number of properties for AARES conference delegates by booking through Premier Event Concepts (link provided in registration process).

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Great Falls Montana Development Authority Chosen as a Montana Food & Ag Development Center

Designation by the Montana Department of Agriculture will boost economic development efforts in food and agricultural processing as well as renewable energy 

Great Falls, MT - October 31, 2017 - The Great Falls Montana Development Authority (GFDA) announced today it has been selected by the Montana Department of Agriculture as one of the state's four Food & Ag Development Centers. This announcement comes on the heels of Great Falls businesses including Montana Specialty Mills and Montana Eggs expanding dairy and agriculture operations in the area.

Food and agricultural processing has long been a target industry to grow and diversify the Great Falls regional economy, support the creation of higher wage jobs and expand the region's tax base. Other Food and Ag centers in Montana include Havre, Joliet and Ronan.
"Montana ships about 85 percent of its agricultural production out of state without adding more value, creating tremendous opportunity for ingredient and product production," says Jolene Schalper, vice president and interim director of the new center. "We have enjoyed many successes in winning private investment in this critical industry sector, attracting businesses like MaltEurop, Timeless Seeds, The Front Brewing Co., Windrift Hill, Pasta Montana, Montana Specialty Mills, Cut Bank Creek Brewery, Montana Eggs, and more!"

"Montana farm and ranch earnings were down over 50% in 2016, making it even more important to create new local markets for our world-class agricultural production," says Kim Mangold, deputy director of the Montana Department of Agriculture. "We are proud to have Great Falls join the statewide network."

GDFA has partnered with the Montana Department of Agriculture to target niches in food and agricultural processing that offer growth opportunities for the Great Falls region.

With funding support from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and the Montana Growth Through Agriculture program, the authority has published eight business cases in targeted niches. These include: Pulse Fractionation; Pulse Butters, Dips and Spreads; Pulse Snacks; Specialty Malting; Sprouted Grains; Specialty Pasta; Wheat Ingredients; and Barley Ingredients.

"We're using these business cases to help convince local entrepreneurs, existing businesses and companies outside the state that our region offers numerous market opportunities to process food and agricultural ingredients and products right here where it is grown," continues Schalper. GDFA offers business coaching, technical assistance, gap and bridge financing, site selection and other assistance to businesses.

Cut Bank Creek Brewery worked with GFDA and recently opened in Cut Bank, Montana. "The service GFDA provided was invaluable. Without their help, Cut Bank Creek Brewery wouldn't be a realization. I don't know if we would have ever made it," says co-owner Louis Stoltz. "They are priceless to us," says co-owner Kim Stoltz.

In 2016, GFDA opened the Great Falls AgriTech Park to provide fully-served heavy industrial sites for food and agricultural processors, as well as other industry. The 197-acre AgriTech Park offers customized heavy industrial lots ranging in size from seven to 300+ acres. It's the region's first industrial park to offer ready to build lots with access to utilities and rail.

GDFA invested more than $8 million for the construction of the AgriTech Park. Earlier this year, the site was given an Excellence in Regional Transportation Award for its rail system by the National Association of Development Organizations and was certified by the BNSF as part of its Premier Parks Program.

Current AgriTech Park tenants include a cross section of local and foreign direct investments including Montana Specialty Mills, FedEx Ground, Pacific Steel & Recycling, and Japanese-owned Helena Chemical.

About the Great Falls Montana Development Authority
Founded in 1992, the Great Falls Montana Development Authority is an economic development organization that works to create higher paying jobs and promote growth and diversification throughout the Great Falls region of Montana. The public-private partnership includes a trade area of 13 counties that extend from the Eastern slope of the Rockies to the Canadian border. The Great Falls Montana Development Authority sees its role as engaging, leading, guiding, and facilitating regional efforts to build a prosperous and sustainable future for its community.
 About the Montana Food & Ag Development Center Network
The Montana Food and Agricultural Development Center Network helps Montanans innovate and grow businesses that produce and commercialize food, agricultural and renewable energy products and processes, creating wealth and jobs in our communities and on our farms and ranches. The centers - located in Great Falls, Havre, Joliet, and Ronan - operate as a statewide network serving community-based businesses throughout Montana. The centers support economic development by ensuring that more of the state's food, agricultural and energy dollars circulate in Montana. The network provides training, coaching and technical assistance, including: product development, testing and analysis; regulatory compliance training; food processing; business planning and development; market research; business networking; access to financing; cooperative development; and education on industry dynamics and technologies.