Published on 12/05/17

Georgia Ag Forecast set to hit the state Jan. 30 through Feb. 7

By Merritt Melancon

The Georgia Ag Forecast seminar series will be held Jan. 30 through Feb. 7 at six sites across the state. University of Georgia agricultural economists will present insights into the latest market and regulatory conditions for the state’s largest industry — agriculture.

Hosted by the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, the 2018 seminar series will be held in Athens, Bainbridge, Cartersville, Lyons, Macon and Tifton, Georgia. Registration for the series is now open at

More than 1,000 producers, agribusiness representatives and community leaders attended the seminars in 2017.

“The main objective of the Ag Forecast seminar series is to provide Georgia’s producers and agribusiness leaders with information on where we think the industry is headed in the upcoming year,” said Kent Wolfe, director of the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development. “It helps producers plan for the next year, but it’s also good for bankers and others who have businesses involved in agriculture or who will be impacted by the farm economy.”

Economists from the center and from the college’s department of agricultural and applied economics will deliver the economic outlook, which will focus on Georgia’s major commodities and the way that global markets, weather patterns and historical trends will affect them.

In addition to the economic outlook for 2018, attendees in Bainbridge, Lyons, Macon and Tifton will hear from Bob Redding of the Redding Firm in Washington, D.C. Redding will discuss major themes that may be addressed in the 2018 farm bill and moderate a discussion on the bill.

Attendees in Athens and Cartersville will hear from Matt Hauer of the UGA Carl Vinson Institute of Government Applied Demography Program. This program provides state and local leaders with current demographic data and detailed population projections that enable Georgia leaders to more effectively address issues and plan for the future. In 2017, Hauer worked with the Georgia House of Representatives Rural Development Council to provide the demographic data they needed to make recommendations for potential legislation.

The 2018 Georgia Ag Forecast sessions will be held on the following dates at the following locations: 

  • Tuesday, Jan. 30: Lyons, Georgia – Toombs County Agri-Center
  • Thursday, Feb. 1: Bainbridge, Georgia – Decatur County Agricultural Center
  • Friday, Feb. 2: Tifton, Georgia – Tifton Campus Conference Center
  • Monday, Feb. 5: Macon, Georgia – Georgia Farm Bureau Building
  • Tuesday, Feb. 6: Cartersville, Georgia – Clarence Brown Conference Center
  • Wednesday, Feb. 7: Athens, Georgia – The Classic Center

Individual seats are $35 per person and a table of eight is $240. All seminars begin at 9 a.m. and are followed by a networking lunch, except for the Tifton event which will open with a 7 a.m. breakfast, followed by the seminar.

The Georgia Ag Forecast seminar series is supported by the Georgia Department of Agriculture and Georgia Center of Innovation for Agribusiness.

For more information on the 2018 Georgia Ag Forecast series, visit or search for #gaagforecast on social media.

Merritt Melancon is a public relations manager with UGA's Terry College of Business and previously served as a public relations coordinator for the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and UGA Extension.

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