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Facilitated Networking
EPA’s Pesticide Program Activities
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is a critical partner in agricultural policy and implementation of the enacted 2018 Farm Bill.  By evaluating and regulating pesticides manufactured, used, and imported into the United States, EPA ensures that growers have tools to support production while protecting human health and the environment.  Registration Division Director Michael Goodis will provide an update on EPA's Pesticide Program activities and the evolving conversation around hemp.
Michael Goodis | Director of the Registration Division of the Office of Pesticide Programs, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
PRE-RECORDED: What’s in my hemp? Testing for product quality, safety, and compliance
Hemp, also known as Cannabis sativa, has been prohibited to be grown in the US for the past 70 years, and was considered for the most part a schedule I controlled substance by the US Drug Enforcement Administration. This has changed at the beginning of this year with the enactment of the 2018 Farm Bill. Now, industrial hemp is “just another crop” in the United States and subject to the usual regulations for crops and crop derived products, like food, feed, cosmetic products, pharmaceuticals, and more. Testing emerges as a critical factor to ensure product compliance, safety, and product quality, and that the hemp derived products are safe for the environment, humans, pets, and livestock. This includes pesticide uses in hemp, which have to be registered with the US EPA and the individual State regulatory agencies. Testing is also needed to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. A holistic approach to testing is needed to test for cannabinoid and terpene profiles, adulterants like heavy metals, mycotoxins, pesticide residues, residual solvents, pathogens, nutritional composition and equivalency for ingestible food and feed products, and more. With integrated complex and complete testing, quick turn-around times, traceability, and the pressure from consumers, a holistic approach is mandated for Product Safety, Quality, and Compliance.
Volker Bornemann, Ph.D. | President & CEO, Avazyme, Inc.
Arthropod Management Challenges and Opportunities in Industrial Hemp
With the recent expansion of industrial hemp production throughout the United States has come an emergence of a number of new pest associations. Among the most common hemp herbivores include corn earworm, cannabis aphids, twospotted spider mites, and hemp russet mites. Little is known about the significance of the potential pests with respect to yield and quality of hemp, and because the hemp market is dynamic it is also difficult to make economically meaningful statements about arthropod management. One significant constraint to hemp arthropod management has been the lack of labeled pesticides combined with the reluctance of many purchasers to accept product with pesticide residues. This presents an opportunity to develop and optimize biopesticides and biological controls for hemp pest management. In this presentation, we provide an overview of management tactics currently used by hemp producers as well as areas of research and development need.
Hannah Burrack | Professor, North Carolina State University
Facilitated Networking
PRE-RECORDED: The Legal Framework for Regulating Pesticide Use on Cannabis Crops
PRE-RECORDED: Efforts to Facilitate Crop Protection Products for Hemp
The IR-4 Project (IR-4)  is a national agriculture research program that is a partnership between USDA, the State Land-Grant Universities, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the crop protection companies. The IR-4 Project’s primary objective is to develop data that is required to support registrations of chemical pesticides and biopesticides on fruits, vegetables, nuts, herbs and other specialty crops.  IR-4 is needed because the crop protection companies focus their development resources on major crops/markets like corn, cotton, soybeans, etc.; often leaving the specialty crop farmers with a limited arsenal of crop protection tools. 
Requests for Assistance in the registration of new crop protection products on hemp were submitted to IR-4 after the passage of the 2014 Farm Bill.  With this law, it became legal for IR-4 to perform research and develop data on hemp.  However, EPA could not legally review submissions from IR-4 or registrants.  With no clear path to registrations, IR-4 placed the hemp requests on hold. 
This regulatory barrier was changed with the 2018 Farm Bill.  IR-4 was able to add several research studies on hemp to test the efficacy/crop safety with multiple fungicides and herbicides.  IR-4 has been working closely with EPA to define the pesticide residue data requirements for hemp.  Because of the significant variation in production systems, crop use and extraction methodology, developing data requirements for hemp is very complex. 
IR-4 has submitted a crop extrapolation proposal for the herbicide ethalfluralin on hemp.  IR-4 has also submitted EPA Guideline 860 research protocols for the herbicide bromoxynil and the fungicide azoxystrobin to EPA.  EPA has provided guidance and IR-4 will be conducting  residue studies in 2020.  Details will be discussed.
Dr. Jerry J. Baron | Executive Director, IR-4 Project
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Facilitated Networking
Opening Remarks from Dr. Linton
KEYNOTE FarmBeats: Empowering Farmers with Affordable Digital Agriculture Solutions
Data-driven techniques help boost agricultural productivity by increasing yields, reducing losses and cutting down input costs. However, these techniques have seen sparse adoption owing to high costs of manual data collection and limited connectivity solutions. Our system, called FarmBeats, includes Cloud, IoT & AI innovations for agriculture that enables seamless collection and analysis of data across various sensors, cameras, drones, and satellites. In this talk, we will describe the system, and outline some of the AI challenges we are currently addressing for agriculture.
Ranveer Chandra | Chief Scientist, Microsoft Azure Global
KEYNOTE The Intersection of Technology with Sustainability
The sustainability journey starts on the farm and must be lead by farmers.  However, technology and data are agriculture’s best path forward to make scalable, continuous improvement in sustainability.
Matt Carstens | CEO, Landus Cooperative
PANEL | AI and IoT – How Emerging Technologies are Changing the Ag Industry
Moderator: Josh Haslun, Lux Research

Panelists include:
  • Barney Debnam, Global Agriculture Strategy Lead, Microsoft
  • Miya Howell, Director, Sustainable Agriculture Precision Farming, Bayer CropScience
  • Maria Victoria Corte, Agriculture, Food and Life, Precision Farming Services - Product Manager, SGS Argentina S.A.

PRE-RECORDED: Supporting Crop Protection Product Registration for Specialty Crops
The registrants of crop protection products (chemical and bio-based pesticides) often focus their product development resources on major crops (corn, cotton, soybeans, etc) where potential sales can be significant.  Specialty crop markets are minor with the cost of data development often exceeding potential sales leading to an unacceptable return on investment.  The IR-4 Project fills a void by developing the data required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to register the uses on these “minor” areas.   
Dr. Jerry J. Baron | Executive Director, IR-4 Project
Facilitated Networking
PRE-RECORDED: Atmonia – Reinventing the Nitrogen Economy
The Atmonia technology will enable growers to produce their own N-fertilizer on-farm with no demand for transportation, in a sustainable manner, with no carbon footprint. Current methods for N-fertilizer production are vast industrial production processes with high carbon footprint and great transportation demand. With the Atmonia system aqueous N-fertilizer will be produced from air, water and electricity. This fertilizer can be directly applied to field through irrigation using the systems in place thus providing a holistic approach to sustainable production and use of N-fertilizer.

Helga Flosadottir, PhD | Chief Executive Officer, Atmonia
PRE-RECORDED: Imaging Agrochemical Active Ingredient Crystallization Directly on Leaf Surfaces Using Second Harmonic Generation Microscopy
Second harmonic generation (SHG) microscopy has recently emerged as a rapid, non-destructive imaging method inherently selective for certain crystalline materials, including many agrochemical active ingredients. SHG microscopy was used to selectively image active ingredient crystallization directly on leaf surfaces for the first time. Following an overview of foundational experiments in this space, ongoing work using SHG as a feedback tool for agrochemical formulation development will be discussed. This new technology could help inform the next generation of pesticide products that maximize efficacy, minimize waste, and ensure optimized agricultural output for a growing world population.
Paul Schmitt | Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Wabash College
PRE-RECORDED: AGROBODY™ bioactives: a new generation of protein-based biocontrols shaping the future of sustainable and safe food supply
Presentation of our innovative technology platform for the rapid generation of innovative protein-based biocontrols that combine the high-performance of chemicals with the clean safety profile of biologicals.
Dr. Hilde Revets | Chief Scientific Officer, Biotalys
PRE-RECORDED: Regulatory Challenges Facing Biopesticides
As the market for biopesticides continues to expand, so too do the regulatory challenges facing these products. This presentation will discuss the regulatory scheme applicable to biopesticides in the United States, and provide insights on how to successfully navigate the FIFRA maze.
Keith Matthews | Attorney, Wiley Rein LLP
End of Day One
Challenges and Opportunities for Spray Drones in Agriculture
Spray drone technology has readily been available in Asia for many years now but only recently introduced into the US market.  Federal regulations for safe integration of drones into the national airspace is one reason for slow adoption here in the US.  As technology advances, prices fall and federal and state regulators become more comfortable with the safety of these remotely piloted systems, more units are finding their way into the hands of a new generation of aerial applicators.  Some are traditional pilots, but many more are growers and twenty somethings that love practical technology (or technology with a purpose, your call).
In this presentation, I will discuss some of the challenges associated with spray drone technology in the US but will also address the many opportunities this new application platform affords.

Dan Martin | Research Agricultural Engineer, USDA-ARS Aerial Application Technology Research Unit
Panel: Challenges of Using Drones for Farming
Moderator: Luke Bozeman, Director, Research and Development Agricultural Solutions, North America, BASF

  • Daniel E Martin, Aerial Application Technology Research, Research Engineer, USDA
  • Timothy Lane, Principal Research Scientist, Battelle
  • Michael Ott, CEO, Rantizo
  • Neill Newton, Senior Product Application Specialist, Syngenta
Facilitated Networking
PRE-RECORDED: Spray Drift from a Drone Application in a Controlled Wind Speed Environment
Utilizing drones to spray crops and vineyards in difficult terrain is both an economical and time-saving approach. No label guidance exists for drone applications and registrants are concerned about off-label uses. A DJI Agras MG-1P drone was used for testing spray drift in an ambient breeze tunnel, set at a constant 10 mph. Filter pads were placed downwind to measure deposition. The product sprayed was imidacloprid (Admire Pro). For a foliar application to grape, four TeeJet AIXR110015 nozzles were used for application. Filter pads were analyzed by LC-MS. The resulting analysis provides registrants a means to evaluate drone applications for spray drift and provide guidance for labeling.
Dr. Tim Lane | Principal Research Scientist, Battelle
PRE-RECORDED: Do More with Less
Production agriculture struggles with low margins (e.g. high input costs and low product values), high resource use (e.g. land, water, labor, inputs), and today more than ever, the added pressure to reduce environmental impacts. These challenges amount to a tremendous ask of growers: “Do more with less.”  But as Lux Research’s interactions with industry leaders demonstrate, industry agrichemical majors face an even more difficult ask: “Grow your business on declining sales.”  As an independent thought leader in innovation strategy, we connect the need to “do more with less” to the technology and business model innovations that allow you to avoid the characteristic race to the bottom associated with volume businesses, while gaining advantage in a rapidly changing industry.
Joshua Haslun | Analyst - Agro Innovation Team, Lux Research
PRE-RECORDED: Key Trends, Emerging Challenges and Issues for Food & Agriculture Input Providers in 2020
An overview of the global state of ag chemical and seed industry freedom to operate challenges including major advocacy, trade, political, litigation and commercial influences. Jay Byrne, an industry veteran with more than 25 years tracking and providing issues management support in the agriculture production vertical, will provide insights from v-Fluence global issues intelligence and stakeholder research data into the key challenges and opportunities for industry crop chemical and seed innovation providers. Categories: Current state of the industry/ How to support the chemical industry on educating the general public
Jay Byrne | President, v-Fluence
Patterns in the rhizosphere microbiome that lead to improved plant growth
Plants can lose anywhere from 30-40% of their carbon resources through exudates. The amount of resources only make evolutionary sense in light of the recruitment of a microbiome that provides a substantial benefit to plant fitness. We explored the rhizosphere microbiome of corn and soybeans in different soils to identify key organisms and functional groups that are recruited by these plant exudates. We present two case studies where we examine the plant health benefits of adding key organisms or functional groups, one in corn and one in soybeans. We saw a significant increase in chlorophyll content (8-13% over control) in microplot and greenhouse trials in corn, and a significant increase in pod count (15% over control) in greenhouse trials for soybeans. These studies show how Novozymes is using the rhizosphere microbiome to find biological solutions to improve plant health.

Jacob Parnell | Scientist, Novozymes
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