2017 Symposium


2017 UMN Production Ag Symposium


Part of the DuPont Plant Sciences Symposia Series


The Production Agricultural Symposium is annual event hosted by students in the Applied Plant Science Graduate Program at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. The symposium is a full day event featuring advice from experts in the field, breakout sessions lead by science and industry leaders, and a poster competition for graduate students in production agriculture.

This Symposium is one of a series of symposia flag-shipped by DuPont Pioneer in collaboration with many Universities internationally. At our symposium here in Minnesota, we strive for an audience of those in agricultural production: farmers throughout the state and midwest, university students in agricultural fields, as well as industry and research leaders in Minnesota and throughout the country.

The Production Agricultural Symposium is a free event designed to promote interaction among student scientists, producers, academia, and industry.  

The DuPont Plant Sciences Symposia series consists of 65 events at various Universities on 5 different continents. More information may be found at https://www.pioneer.com/home/site/about/research/PlantSciSymposiaSeries/



University of Minnesota 4th Annual Production Symposium Schedule of Events



Registration, Breakfast & Coffee  8:00 - 8:40

Introductions  8:40 - 9:00

Opening Keynote Speaker  9:00 - 9:50

Poster/Exhibitor Session and Morning Break  10:00 - 10:50

Breakout Session  11:00 - 11:50



Lunch + Poster Viewing  12:00 - 1:00

Expert Panel Discussion  1:00 - 1:50

Closing Keynote Speaker  2:00 - 2:50

Closing Remarks & Questions  2:50 - 3:00

Social Hour  3:00 - 6:00




Morning Keynote

Marisol Berti

Dr. Marisol Berti

North Dakota State University


Dr. Marisol Berti has a BS in Agronomy from the Catholic University in Chile, her home country. She obtained her MS and Ph.D. degrees at North Dakota State University. Currently, she is a professor in the Department of Plant Sciences, North Dakota State University. She is the forage and biomass crop production researcher. Her project includes bioenergy crops, cover crops, and forages. She has more than 20 years of experience in crop production research. She is author or co-author of 56 peer-reviewed publications, 20 proceeding publications, 2 book chapters, and over 120 presentations at conferences or symposiums. Dr. Berti  is the project director of a four year USDA-NIFA-AFRI grant “CropSys-CAP- A novel management approach to increase productivity, resilience, and long-term sustainability of cropping systems in the northern Great Plains”. The grant  includes 13 researchers from four institutions and the funding awarded was $3,739,199. She is active in many professional associations and is recognized for her  research both nationally and internationally.

Afternoon Keynote 

Lisa Moore

Dr. Lisa Schulte Moore

Iowa State University


Dr. Lisa Schulte Moore is a professor in the Department of Natural Resource Ecology and Management at Iowa State University. She conducts research and teaches in the areas of agriculture, ecology, forestry and human-landscape interactions. Her current research addresses the strategic integration of perennials into agricultural landscapes to meet societal goals for clean water, healthy soils, abundant wildlife and inspiring recreational opportunities. Dr. Schulte Moore is co-founder and co-leader of the Science-based Trials of Rowcrops Integrated with Prairie Strips (STRIPS) project (www.prairiestrips.org), which pioneered the prairie strips conservation practice. She is also lead developer of People in Ecosystems/ Watershed Integration (PEWI, https://www.nrem.iastate.edu/pewi/), a simple web-based educational game designed to help people understand human impacts on the environment and improve the management of natural resources.
Dr. Schulte Moore has published more than 60 peer-reviewed scientific articles and 30 educational articles. Her honors include the Iowa State University Early Career Award in Teaching (2007), Teaching Award of Merit from the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (2007), Stanford University Leopold Leadership Fellow (2013), and Kavli Frontiers of Science Fellow (2014). She is a member of the Ecological Society of America’s “Rapid Response Team” and a trustee with the Iowa Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. 
Dr. Schulte Moore has been on the faculty at Iowa State University since 2003. She worked as a post-doctoral associate with the U.S. Forest Service from 2002 to 2003. She earned a B.S. in biology at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, an M.S. in biology at the University of Minnesota-Duluth and a Ph.D. in forestry in 2002 at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She lives in Ames, Iowa, with her husband, Peter Moore, and two sons. They also spend time at their diversified family farm near Strum, Wisconsin.


Expert Panel

Paul Carter

Paul Carter

Senior Agronomy Sciences Manager
DuPont Pioneer





Russell Gesch

Research Plant Physiologist








Keith Hartmann

Gibbon, MN
Keith utilizes cover crops in corn production, produced machinery to interseed cover crops while sidedressing nitrogen.


Matt Leavitt

Matt Leavitt

Albert Lea Seed



Breakout Sessions

Forages (Room 135)

Time Presenter Title
Amanda Grev
Yield and Forage Nutritive Value of Reduced Lignin and Conventional Alfalfa Varieties Subject to Diverse Cutting Treatments
Reagan Noland
Responding to alfalfa winterkill with warm season annual forages
Hannah Phillips
Meat quality and taste differences between three dairy steer breeds grazed on cover crops


Cropping Rotations (Room 155)

Time Presenter Title
M. Scott Wells
Double Cropping Systems with Pennycress and Camelina                      
Len Kne and Bryan Runck
The New Agricultural Bioeconomy Project
Salvador Ramirez
Biofuels or Biology, Can We Have Both?


New and Alternative Crops (Room 156)

Time Presenter Title
11:00-11:15 Katrina Freund Cultivation of Native and Naturalized Minnesota Plants for Seed, Biomass, Natural Products, and Ecosystem Services
11:15-11:30 Mike Lilja

Hazelnut Production in Minnesota: A Grower's Perspective and Experience

11:30-11:45 Michelle Dobbratz Corn Establishment in a Kura Clover Living Mulch


Cover Crops (Room 32)

Time Presenter Title
Nicholas Wiering
Breeding Hairy Vetch for Cover Crop Usage
Tom Cotter
Grower: How to get Cover Crops into your crop rotation. Multi and single species, V-6 interseeding, benefits, and how to get a "I can do it attitude"
Guillermo Marcillo
Characterizing Vegetative Development and Pheno-Phases of Winter Rye Cover Crop Under Iowa Conditions.


Guidelines for breakout presentations:

  • The allotted time for breakout presentations is 15 minutes (12-minute presentation and 3 minutes for questions). Practice your presentation beforehand and time it accordingly.
  • Create your presentation in PowerPoint format.
  • Keep it simple. Summarize the main points - don't include every detail of what you plan to say. Try to limit the text up to five lines per slide, and keep the number of words to a minimum.
  • Keep the color scheme consistent throughout your presentation.
  • In addition to the graphics, photographs can be an excellent way to communicate the information.
  • Think of the presentation as a story. Clear and logical flow of ideas is important for successful presentation.
  • Speak loudly and clearly.
  • When a question is asked by the audience, repeat the question so that the entire audience knows what the question is.
  • Make the take-home message persistent
  • Provide references and contact information so that audience can follow up if they need additional information.


Exhibitors and Poster Sessions

To apply for travel grants, applicants visited https://productionagsymposium.umn.edu/2017-symposium/travel-grants.  The deadline for accepting applications was February 10th, 2017.

Registration for exhibitor tables and poster presentations closed February 17th, 2017.



Guidelines for poster presentation:

The poster board provided will be approximately 45’’ high x 45’' wide. Your poster presentation must fit within this size. Pushpins and thumbtacks will be made available at the poster area.

It is the authors’ responsibility to set-up and remove poster.

The posters can be set up from 8:00am to 8:45am and can be taken down between 2:00pm and 4:00 pm. The authors need not be present the entire time, but must be present during the time for poster session which is 10:00am to 11:00am.

Make sure text can be read easily from a considerable distance (4-6 feet). Recommended text size is between 16 – 20 pt. The title should be larger than the rest of the text. Use legible fonts such as Serif, Sans-Serif, Times New Roman, or Baskerville.

The audience for the symposium includes farmers, students and faculty. Prepare your presentations so that they address the target audience. Avoid using jargon and acronyms specific to your field of research.

Organize different sections in your poster logically so that readers can follow through it easily. Use arrows, numbering, or whatever else makes sense in moving from one section to another.

Simplicity is the key. Keep the content to the point, clear and concise. Verify that every item in your poster is necessary. 

Make sure that the visuals used in the poster can stand alone. Number the figures and tables according to the order in which they are first mentioned in the text.

Be prepared to provide a brief summary of your project to the visitors. Allow the visitors to go through the information in the poster at their own pace. If a visitor asks a question, talk simply and openly about the work. This would be a good opportunity to get feedback on the work.


Video Coverage of Event

Introduction to Symposium and Opening Keynote Speaker Dr. Marisol Berti's (NDSU) Seminar (begins at 23:00):



Forages Breakout Session:



Expert Panel featuring Keith Hartmann (producer), Matt Leavitt (agronomist at Albert Lea Seed), Dr. Russell Gesch (USDA-ARS), and Dr. Paul Carter (Pioneer):



Afternoon Keynote Speaker Dr. Lisa Shulte-Moore's (ISU) Seminar:




Our Sponsors

The 2017 Production Agriculture Symposium was graciously funded by: 

DuPont Pioneer


Dupont Pioneer



Coca Cola Logo

Albert Lea Seed


Albert Lea Seed

University of Minnesota Student Unions and Activities