AFIA sees record attendance at Feed Industry Institute

170 attended educational conference

The American Feed Industry Association’s (AFIA) longest-standing event, Feed Industry Institute (FII), attracted a record-setting 170 attendees June 16-19, in Minneapolis, up from 150 attendees in 2012.

The conference, hosted by AFIA’s Purchasing and Ingredient Suppliers Committee every two years, provides a forum for those new to the industry to learn about feed and ingredients first hand from highly qualified industry experts. This year’s theme was “Your Path to Understanding the Feed Industry.”

A variety of speakers educated FII students on topics spanning from the physiology and nutrition of monogastric and ruminant animals to water soluble and fat soluble vitamins to the importance of quality sales and customer service.

Some speakers, like Dr. Tom Earleywine, Land O’Lakes Animal Milk Products, linked the connection between animal nutrition and human nutrition. “The No. 1 dairy export is whey,” he said. Whey is used in specialty feeds to provide a source of flavorful, high-quality protein that is easily digestibly for cows. Humans consume whey in numerous protein-based products such as shakes, bars and certain cheeses.

Other speakers stuck to scientific facts. “The world would be a very different place without protein; and in fact, it would only be a rock, the third rock from the sun,” said Dr. John Thomson, Evonik Industries, in his discussion on proteins and amino acids. “Protein is essential to life.”