Recent Meetings

Decoupled Payments and Farm Sector Models

In October 2004, ERS and the Farm Foundation cosponsored the workshop 'Modeling Decoupled Payments,' which focused on including payments not directly linked to market prices or farm production, known as decoupled payments, in farm sector models. Presenters from ERS, academia, international organizations, and private industry discussed recent changes to agricultural policy in the U.S. and the European Union and alternative approaches to modeling to address challenges posed by decoupled payments. Paul Westcott

Demand for Grain-Based Foods

In September 2004, ERS and the Farm Foundation cosponsored a workshop titled 'Understanding Demand Shifts for Grain-Based Foods' in Minneapolis, MN. The workshop was hosted by The Food Industry Center of the University of Minnesota. About 50 participants from the food industry, government, the media, and academia shared information on the effects of current consumer trends and nutrition issues on demand for grain-based foods. Participants also discussed how different data sources can contribute to the assessment and monitoring of consumption trends. Presentations by ERS economists addressed U.S. per capita food availability and intake and how intake estimates vary by demographic categories. Jean Buzby

A New ERS Lecture Series

In September 2004, ERS inaugurated the Henry C. Taylor Lecture series. A pioneer in the field of agricultural economics, Taylor helped to create the Bureau of Agricultural Economics, the predecessor of ERS, and served as its first director. Professor Jagdish Bhagwati, noted international trade economist at Columbia University, delivered the first Taylor Lecture. In his talk, 'In Defense of Globalization,' Bhagwati shared observations on the outcomes of World Trade Organization negotiations and insights on outsourcing and other related current economic issues. Recognizing that Taylor was also the first leader of the Farm Foundation, the event concluded with a presentation of the Taylor Commemora- tive Plaque to Bhagwati by current Farm Foundation President Walt Armbruster. A reception followed honoring former leaders of ERS, including Ken Farrell, John Lee, and J.B. Penn. This annual lecture series is designed to promote discourse on contemporary economic issues of interest to agricultural economists within and outside ERS and USDA.