New World Challenges for Agriculture is the theme for the 2010 Texas Plant Protection Association Conference scheduled Dec. 6 and 7 at the Brazos Center in Bryan.

"Several important topics affecting agriculture will be addressed at this year's conference," said Amir Ibrahim, association president and small-grains breeding program leader in the department of soil and crop sciences at Texas A&M University-College Station.

Dr. Craig Nessler, director of Texas AgriLife Research, will introduce the keynote speakers. Leading off will be a presentation on climate change and its impact on crops by Dr. Jerry Hatfield, laboratory director and supervisory plant physiologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service.

Dr. Stanley Culpepper, Extension agronomist at the University of Georgia, will discuss current weed-resistance issues that have affected crops throughout the southwest.

Matt Bathe, president of Capital Farm Credit in Bryan, will give participants an overview of the current farm credit markets to round out the morning program. Afternoon sessions will focus on farm management, future technology and chemistry.

Programs on Dec. 7 include concurrent sessions on fertilizer and water management, grain, soybeans and rice, horticulture and minor crops, cotton, and pastures and rangeland management. An awards luncheon will be held at noon.

Continuing education units for holders of Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide licenses and for the Certified Crop Advisers will be offered. Conference registration is $85 prior to Nov. 6 and $95 thereafter. Full-time farmers who register prior to the Dec. 6 conference will receive complimentary registration.

I will be moderating a session on Monday, December 6 focusing on Farm Management. This session will begin at 1 p.m. with the following presentations; "Minimizing Aflatoxin in Texas Corn," by Ray Smith of Biological Research Services, Inc., "Aflatoxin Management in Corn," by Tom Isakeit, Extension Plant Pathologist, "Farm Bill Update," by Joe Outlaw, Extension Economist, "Alternative Crop Options," by Rob Duncan, Small Grains Extension Specialist, and "Weed Resistance in Texas," by Paul Baumann, Extension Weed Specialist. This is just a very small sampling of topics to be covered at the two-day event.

For registration information and more information about the association, visit