2018 AgExpo Photo Gallery

2018 Riverside County Agriculture Expo

INDIO – Cutting-edge experts in agriculture technology and a best-selling author joined 250 attendees March 14 at the Riverside County Fairgrounds for day full of stimulating panel discussions, high-tech presentations and networking.

Major agriculture equipment companies such as RDO Equipment Co. and Quinn Company displayed drones, tractors and other high-tech devices. Entrepreneurs demonstrated a diverse array of products such as software that helps manage water consumption using remote sensors and powerful cameras that can scan soil nutrients and determine which fertilizers are needed.

The keynote speaker was best-selling author Michele Payn, who wrote “Food Truths from Farm to Table” and “No More Food Fights!” and who is sought after across the country to speak as a champion for agriculture.

The Ag Expo featured six panel discussions with renowned experts such as Henry “Hank” L. Giclas, senior vice president science & technology, strategic planning at Western Growers, which runs the Western Growers Center for Innovation and Technology based in Salinas. Giclas was joined by representatives from FarmWise, a San Francisco-based startup that has created a weeding robot, and Ganaz, a new technology company from Seattle that uses a mobile app to connect farmers to workers.

Other panels provided information about the latest advances in water and irrigation technology, workforce and labor issues, how to export and more.

Students from the La Quinta High School Culinary Academy served hors d’oeuvres mid-morning, and students from Indio High School provided guests with a tour of the school’s Technical Education, Animal Science Horticulture Pathways. Students from both Indio High School and Coachella Valley High School attended the event and provided information about the agriculture programs at their schools.


Featured Keynote Speaker Michele Payn

Michele Payn, Certified Speaking Professional, connects the people and science of food and farming as principal of Cause Matters Corp. She is known for being a community catalyst, a passionate advocate for global agriculture - and antagonizing people into action.

Michele has worked with farmers in more than 25 countries, raised more than $5 million in sponsorships for the National FFA Foundation and founded the weekly online Twitter conversations, AgChat and Food Chat. She is the author of two books, No More Food Fights! and Food Truths from Farm to Table, an Amazon #1 best seller. Michele’s degrees are in agricultural communications and animal science from Michigan State University. She has earned the Certified Speaking Professional designation, awarded to less than 10 percent of professional speakers globally.

She resides with her daughter on a small farm in central Indiana, where they enjoy Registered Holsteins, MSU Spartans, sports, and arguing about science while cooking. Michele connects conversations between the food and farm communities at www.causematters.com and socially through @mpaynspeaker.


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