Agricultural trade conference to feature trade ministers, Virginia update

businessMinisters from U.S. trade partners and representatives of domestic commodity organizations are among speakers at the 11th annual Virginia Governor’s Conference on Agricultural Trade. The event will be held March 5 at the Richmond Marriott Downtown.

The conference also will include luncheon remarks by Gov. Ralph Northam on Virginia’s trade-related progress and priorities.

For more than a decade, Northam noted, “the Governor’s Conference on Agricultural Trade has served as an important forum for stakeholders from Virginia’s two largest industries to come together and hear from key leaders in government, business and international relations on the outlook of the trade environment,”

Speakers include Thomas Barkin, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond; Zhu Hong, economic and commercial minister from the Chinese embassy to the United States; Jesus Zorrilla, EU minister counselor for agriculture to the U.S.; and Cameron Hutchison, Australian minister-counselor for agriculture and water resources.

Bret Davis, secretary of the American Soybean Association, and Maria Zieba, director of international affairs for the National Pork Producers Council, will share their perspectives on the economic and commercial impact of recent U.S. trade disruptions.

The conference is co-hosted by the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, the Virginia Port Authority and Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics.

For agenda and lodging details, or to register, visit

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