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(VINCENNES, Ind.) August 10, 2023 – U.S. Senator Todd Young of Indiana, Indiana experts, and Hoosier leaders gathered at the Vincennes University Agricultural Center on Wednesday, Aug. 9, for a fireside chat about 21st-century agriculture and the rapid growth Indiana’s agbioscience economy has experienced over the last decade. The discussion was presented by AgriNovus Indiana and VU.

Mitch Fraizer, Senator Todd Young, and Dr. Chuch Johnson

According to VU President Dr. Chuck Johnson, “It is so exciting to talk about agbioscience innovation because agriculture is so important to this region that we call home. The University extends its gratitude to Senator Todd Young and Mitch Frazier of AgriNovus Indiana for shining the spotlight on the exciting future of this industry for VU and our many partners in this region and state.” 

Agbioscience, also known as agriculture bioscience, is at the intersection of where food, agriculture, science, and technology meet. The industry focuses on leveraging cutting-edge advancements to enhance agricultural production; animal health and nutrition; agricultural equipment and technology; plant science and crop production; and value-added food and nutrition, and addresses challenges related to food security, environmental sustainability, and resource efficiency. 

Mitch Fraizer and Todd Young

Indiana is a national leader in agbioscience research, development, and innovation, according to AgriNovus Indiana and the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC).

The fireside chat featuring Senator Young and AgriNovus Indiana President and CEO Mitch Frazier served as a vibrant platform for them to share their expertise about where agbioscience sits today, Indiana maintaining its competitive edge globally, and the continued pursuit of new initiatives to expand the workforce to grow and support a key sector of the state’s economy.

Young is well-versed in agriculture economics. His master’s degree thesis focused on the economics of Midwestern agriculture.

“Indiana leads the way across the United States not just in food production, but also in food science,” Young said. “Ag research is where I see a real opportunity to change the game. Indiana is better positioned than perhaps anyone else to grab this and run with it.”

The chat fostered insightful conversations, collaborative networking, enabling participants to forge meaningful connections and catalyze enterprises that drive the agbioscience sector forward.

VU is empowering a modern workforce by offering specialized education in an array of agbioscience-related bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, and certificates, including AgricultureCellular Biology and GeneticsFood Process EngineeringPre-Veterinary and Pre-Veterinary TechnologyAgricultural and Biological EngineeringSustainable Foods and Farming SystemsHorticulture and Landscape DesignAgribusinessAnimal HusbandryAgronomy; and Urban Agriculture.

These programs are educating VU graduates for 21st-century careers by equipping them with the latest knowledge and essential skills to contribute to the agbioscience industry’s needs. Graduates can become innovators, researchers, entrepreneurs, and professionals in agbioscience fields.

4 thoughts on “Vincennes University Hosted Senator Todd Young to Discuss Indiana’s “Rapidly-Evolving Agbioscience Economy”

  1. Carol Nolan says:

    I agree with Mark and Roberta. We have only this one precious, irreplaceable planet. We may find out too late that we cannot eat money, we cannot breathe money. We have already lost a lot of ground on this; “Big” is not “best” even now. At Saint Mary-of-the-Woods White Violet Center we have converted all our farm
    lands to their natural state, no chemicals.

  2. John I. Cardwell says:

    Mark and Roberta have valid points. I believe technology will and must play a role in agriculture, healthy food production, and preserving the integrity of the environment. If we do not take care of the environment, if we do not produce healthier foods in the future, then aspects of our agriculture methods and applied technologies could be implicated in our demise. If we do not address unrestrained human population growth, our own behavior will clearly be a major part in that demise. Senator Young, here is an idea. Established an ongoing advisory council of farmers, rural residents, environmentalists, ag and environmental scientists, ag industry folks. Let them identify problems and needed solutions. Set them to the task of building consensus solutions, but do not ignore minority points of view. We clearly need to review and address issues with pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals used in ag. We clearly need to constantly re-envision ag practices. For example, where is the investment and research in high tech small farm equipment? Small can be profitable. Small can mean better means for containing soil erosion. What are we doing to prevent needless suburban sprawl? Where will the next generation grow its food? Where is the research on using water more efficiently, in keeping rivers and groundwater clean? Where is the policy focus and investment in any of the above issues, and many others that I have not mentioned such as ag financing and capitalization, and the training and investing in new farmers? Yes, I agree that agriculture is attached to and stimulates technology innovation, but that does not have to be based on mega farms and ever larger and more expensive manhinery.

  3. Mark Dolezal says:

    Agriculture is big business, however its current state is not necessary the optimum. All sorts of groups are crying about the environment but back in the day regenerative agriculture not only turned out good crops but the method was a natural win for the environment by sequestering carbon and reducing runoff of top soil.
    Unfortunately Big ag has the money to dictate how things get done (lobbyists) and the simple method which countless scholars agree works gets shoved aside. Now we have this huge dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico from excess fertilizers which are necessary to grow crops on soil devoid of natural organisms. Someone has to stand up and make changes that are good for the masses and the world we live in. Heck farmers can not even keep their own seed to use in the following year, no strangle hold there is there.
    There are all sorts of stats on the amount of top soil we lose, the chemicals in are bodies that are absorbed from the food we eat to the lack of nutrition that results from modern farming.. We need someone to lead in us in the right direction, I hope that will be you.

    1. Roberta Avidor says:

      My thoughts as well. We have seen the consequences of modern farming, as stated above. Factory farms (CAFOs), use of antibiotics because of these CAFOs, harmful pesticides and herbicides. I would hope these issues would be front and center.

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