NAMA Goes Full Throttle in Milwaukee

Written by NAMA on Tuesday, October 3, 2017 , 2:28 pm

More than 180 agri-marketers traveled to Milwaukee, WI last month for the sixth annual NAMA Fall Conference. This event is quickly becoming another “can’t miss” NAMA event and this year didn’t disappoint.

As always, the week kicked off with a local ag tour that highlighted the different industries of Wisconsin agriculture: milk, cheese, chocolate and beer! The first stop on the tour was Widmer’s Cheese Cellars where attendees got a look inside how cheese is made and the opportunity to sample different cheeses. Next, they visited Confections for Any Occasion to learn how the owner, a blind chocolatier, got started in the business. The group then traveled to Vir-Clar Farms, a third generation dairy farm with over 2,000 cows in the operation. These cows are milked three times a day and the farm uses methane digesters that produce enough renewable electric power for approximately 800 homes. The day ended at Miller Brewing Company in Milwaukee where attendees had the chance to sample some of the many beers from Miller-Coors. Check out some photos from the day.

After the ag tour, the conference kicked off with a reception sponsored by Brownfield Ag News where they launched the “Brownfield Blackout Bingo” game. This pushed attendees to network with everyone at the conference to fill out each square on the game card. The game continued throughout the week with Lauren Taylor, Indiana Soybean Alliance, and Brittany Hanson, Monsanto, as the big winners of a Yeti cooler and Amazon gift cards.

The next full day of conference was filled with great sessions and panels on social media, building your personal brand and consumer food trends.

The day rounded out with a reception hosted by Bader Rutter at their new office in downtown Milwaukee. Guests had a great time networking with colleagues while overlooking the river. Attendees also had the chance to tour the new and modern office.

On the last day of the conference, NAMA’s Professional Development Awards of Excellence were presented to the four winners. These awards were sponsored by Farm Progress. The 2017 winners were:

•   Linda Frerichs, Arysta LifeScience
    Professional Development Award in Marketing Communications

•   Jill DeLucero, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association
    Professional Development Award in Product Management

•   Kelly Schwalbe, Sage
    Professional Development Award in Public Relations

•   Dave Korbelik, Beck Ag
    Professional Development Award in Sales

Check out some great photos of this year’s Fall Conference thanks to ZimmComm New Media!

And make sure to mark your calendar now for next year’s Fall Conference. Join NAMA in Minneapolis, MN on September 18-20, 2018.

There’s Still Time to Register

Written by NAMA on Friday, September 15, 2017 , 2:39 pm

Our Fall Conference registration numbers are the highest they’ve been in three years! Click here for an updated registration list.

There’s still time to register.

We’ve already registered team leaders from all the companies above. They want to take advantage of this opportunity to squeeze in some networking and professional development before the year is out. And so should you!

In-depth breakout sessions… A thoughtfully curated ag tour… Keynote presentations from the marketing leaders and brand powerhouses. It’s all waiting for you in addition to the unbeatable networking.

Don’t wait! Get your motor running and your wheels pointed to Milwaukee next week!


Do you still need a room in Milwaukee?

NAMA still has a few rooms at the Hilton. If you need a room for next week, please send us an email or call the NAMA office at (913) 491-6500.

Find out even more on the Fall Conference Website. We hope to see you in Milwaukee!

Add the Badger Ag Tour Now

Written by NAMA on Friday, September 15, 2017 , 2:38 pm

There is still time to add the Badger Ag Tour to your Fall Conference registration! Get a unique perspective on some of the most enterprising ag operations in the great state of Wisconsin. The cost for this tour is $75 and includes breakfast and lunch. See below for a full schedule of the day’s activities.

Does this sound like a great way to start off your Fall Conference experience? Register Now!

Tuesday, September 19

7:30 a.m.: Depart the hotel.

Stop #1 – Theresa, WI: 

Confections for Any Occasion | Chocolate is a specialty for this blind entrepreneur, Joel Bernhard. All of his delectable chocolates are made with real Wisconsin butter and his company proudly participates in Something Special from Wisconsin, Travel Wisconsin and Discover Dodge County. In addition to gourmet chocolates, the store features a variety of other Wisconsin-made products, including sausages, mustards, maple syrup, cheese spreads and honey. We’ll tour the store, learn a little bit about chocolate making and, of course, do some shopping.

Widmer’s Cheese Cellars | This cheese plant has been home to three generations of Widmer cheesemakers. Joe Widmer, current owner and master cheesemaker, still makes Brick cheese the old-fashioned way by using bricks to gently squeeze the whey from the curd. Widmer has won many awards for his handcrafted cheeses. We will learn about the company’s history, watch cheesemaking in action and sample cheese.

Stop #2 – Fond du Lac, WI: 

Vir-Clar Farms | Katie (Boyke) and Grant Grinstead and JR Boyke are the third generation on this family farm and currently manage it with their parents, Gary and Rose Boyke. The family has 2,000 cows and farms 2,800 acres of land. Methane digesters produce enough renewable electric power for approximately 800 homes. Cows are milked three times a day in a double-30 parlor. All the calves are raised on the farm and the family counts on 32 full-time employees to help Vir-Clar run smoothly. Katie will lead us on a tour of the entire farm and explain how this modern dairy farm gives animals the best care possible to produce wholesome, nutritious milk.

En route to Milwaukee: Beer and Cheese Pairing | We’ll match three Wisconsin craft beers with specialty cheeses, explaining how the flavors complement each other.  Participants will get a taste of so many award-winning products crafted in Wisconsin.

Stop #3 – Milwaukee, WI: 

Miller Brewing Company | Miller Brewing Company has been brewing “confoundly good beers” for 160 years. This tour begins at the Visitor Center and includes a four-block walk, allowing for an inside look at the brew house. Learn how Miller-Coors products are made, packaged and distributed worldwide. We’ll conclude the tour with product sampling and sodas.

3:45 p.m.: Arrive back at the hotel.

Fall Conference Hotel Rooms Still Available

Written by NAMA on Friday, September 1, 2017 , 10:54 am

NAMA Still Has Rooms for Fall Conference!

Do you still need a room in Milwaukee? NAMA still has some rooms available at the Hilton City Center Hotel! If you still need a room, please send us an email or call the NAMA office at (913) 491-6500.

The early bird registration date is this Tuesday, September 5. If you haven’t registered for Fall Conference yet, there is still time to do so at the lower rate. Register today and save yourself some money!

Check out the Fall Conference Website for all the information you will need in Milwaukee!

Fall Conference Keynote Sneak Peek

Written by NAMA on Friday, September 1, 2017 , 10:54 am

Cheryl Cran is one of the fantastic keynote speakers that NAMA has lined up for Fall Conference this year. She will be presenting at the Second General Session on Thursday, September 21.

Get a first look at her presentation in this promo video. We hope to see you all in Milwaukee! Find out more on the Fall Conference website.

The early bird registration cutoff is Tuesday, September 5 so make sure you register soon for the 2017 NAMA Fall Conference!

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