American poultry, egg industry conference held at IPE/IFE 2102

International Poultry Expo conference addressed poultry industry's role in feeding the growing world population

In 50 years, the world will need 100 percent more food; and the poultry industry must help meet the challenge of providing safe, abundant and affordable food to a population that is 7 billion and growing, according to the Executive Conference on the Future of the American Poultry and Egg Industry held at the 2012 International Poultry and International Feed Expo.

Jeff Simmons, Elanco Animal Health president, remarked that as the farming and agriculture industries look for ways to become more efficient and play a greater part in feeding the planet, the market will be shaped over the next several decades by global population increases, rising demand for dairy and meat proteins, environmental concerns, economic constraints and various public issues. He also said that technology has the potential to address 70 percent to 75 percent of food-related issues and will enable progress in production and availability, choice and sustainability. “We’re at a tipping point where we can really make some progress in this industry. This is an opportunity and a moral responsibility,” Simmons said.

James Paulsen, chief investment strategist for Wells Capital Management, said that while the economy still seems bad, early indicators of a turnaround may have been overlooked or downplayed because of outdated ideas of what improvement should look like.“There are a lot of things to worry about, but don’t miss the recovery while you’re worrying,” Paulsen said.

In his Economic Outlook presentation, Paulsen predicted that the 2012 unemployment rate would slowly but steadily decline, consumer confidence would rise, the housing market would improve somewhat, and corporations would begin to spend money to stimulate the economy.

“Adjusted for labor force growth, the current recovery is stronger than those of the 1970s,” he said. “We have to recognize that the recovery is working, but it’s a different character of growth.”

Among other speakers, Dr. Elisabeth Hagen, under secretary for food safety in the Food Safety and Inspection Service, addressed the United States Department of Agriculture’s recently announced plan to modernize poultry inspections to focus on areas most relevant to food safety, while pulling back on items that have little impact on detection and prevention of foodborne illnesses. Tom Silva, vice president at J.S. West Milling Co., presented his initial results in his presentation on enriched colony housing.