MANKATO — As many as 300 people are expected to attend a rural agriculture forum Dec. 1 in Mankato, according to organizers of the event.

The 39th annual Rural Forum is 4:30- 8:30 p.m. at the Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center in Mankato. This year’s topic is Global Partnerships: Integrating People, Businesses & Governments.

It’s an important topic that affects many, said Sam Ziegler, director and president of GreenSeam, which is hosting the forum.

“The whole point is there’s a lot that goes into any business that U.S., Mexico and Canada have in common, and we have a mutual interest to work together,” Ziegler said. “Let’s have a conversation about it. The global partnership conversation is really important.”

The forum aims to connect public leaders with a wide range of attendees from the agriculture sector, such as producers, manufacturers, educators, researchers and more.

The event is a great opportunity for conversations about key issues facing the rural economy, as well as a time for brainstorming potential solutions to pending challenges, Ziegler said.

The forum will feature two keynote speakers and a signature panel. The keynote speakers are Ariel Delouya, consul general of Canada in Minneapolis, and Ivan Roberto Sierra Medel, head consul of Mexico in St. Paul. Signature panel experts will be Derek Johnson, minister of agriculture Manitoba, Thom Peterson, commissioner of agriculture Minnesota, and Hunter Roberts, secretary of agriculture and natural resources South Dakota.

Also planned for the event is a legislative panel, which will be made up of newly elected legislators with those folks still being scheduled, and the state of Minnesota’s FFA president, Emma Kuball, who will speak to what youth think about agriculture issues.

Tickets for the event are $65 and online registrations will close Nov. 28. For more information or to register, visit:

GreenSeam is based in Mankato and is a business unit of Greater Mankato Growth Inc. It’s a nonprofit dedicated to strategically building and connecting the region’s agricultural business assets to the world by enhancing collaboration and investment with public and private sector partners, according to a press release distributed about the Rural Forum.

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