USDA, USAID Host International Food Assistance and Food Security Conference in Des Moines

  |   News Release

Contact: FAS Public Affairs (202) 720-7115 

WASHINGTON, Sept. 12, 2016–The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will host the International Food Assistance and Food Security Conference in Des Moines, Iowa, Oct. 10 to Oct. 11, 2016. The theme of the conference is “Food Assistance in the Fight Against Extreme Poverty.”
The conference, to be held in conjunction the World Food Prize, will bring together partners from the public and private sectors, civil society, and the research and scientific communities to discuss challenges and solutions related to delivering programs to alleviate hunger and promote long-term food security throughout the world.
Speakers will include:

  • Alexis Taylor, Deputy Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, USDA
  • Christie Vilsack, Senior Advisor for International Education, USAID
  • Dr. Rob Bertram, Chief Scientist, USAID Bureau for Food Security
  • Ambassador Darci Vetter, Chief Agricultural Negotiator, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
  • Sharon Bomer Lauritsen, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Agricultural Affairs and Commodity Policy, Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
  • Dr. Muhammad Ibrahim, Director General, Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE)
  • Dr. Andy Jarvis, Director of Decision and Policy Analysis, International Centre for Tropical Agriculture
  • Dr. Howarth Bouis, Program Director, HarvestPlus
  • Carolyn Hart, Director, SPRING Project
  • Dr. Patrick Webb, Alexander McFarlane Professor of Nutrition, Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy
  • Dr. Rafael Pérez-Escamilla, Professor, Yale School of Public Health

More than 500 attendees are expected at the event, which will provide a forum to address policy and operational issues related to food assistance, food security and development, as well as ways to improve communication and cooperation among government, non-profit charitable and non-governmental organizations, and agricultural and transportation industry representatives. The program features a combination of presentations, discussions, networking sessions and exhibits. 
USDA and USAID are two of the 11 U.S. government agencies contributing to Feed the Future, the U.S. government’s global hunger and food security initiative. Feed the Future agencies work hand-in-hand with partner countries to develop their agriculture sectors and break the cycle of poverty and hunger.
To view the full conference agenda and registration details, visit For more information, contact the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service’s Food Assistance Division at or (202) 720-4233.

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