Thank you to our speakers for joining us and lending their expertise to our conference sessions. For more bio and session details, please click on the speaker name or magnifying glass icon, below.
Talk Title: Oat Outlook
Randy Strychar, President of Oatinformation, has been involved in the global oat industry for over 40 years as a trader, marketing manager, broker, and market analyst for some of Canada’s largest grain companies and grower groups.
Randy’s extensive background, insights, and oat industry contacts provides Oatinformation clients a unique and in-depth perspective of what is driving their oat markets.
Randy has made Oatinformation into the leading global provider of oat industry information, ranging from farm gate to consumer. Oatinformation provides daily and weekly market analysis. In addition, the company is extensively involved in creating market development strategies for clients in the oat industry that are growing their oat business.
Oat Milling Session
The Prairie Oat Growers Association
Talk Title: Prairie Growers Association Update
Shawna Mathieson has been the Executive Director of the Prairie Oat Growers Association and the oat commissions in Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan for over 10 years.
Shawna, her husband, Jeff, and children, Andrew and Victoria, grow a multitude of crops such as oats, barley wheat and canola on their farm near Watson, SK. Shawna also assists on the farm as a backup combine or grain cart operator when the need arises. Shawna was raised on a farm in Kansas where her parents still farm today. Shawna has an undergraduate degree in Marketing and Finance from Kansas State University and a Master’s of Business Administration from the University of Texas at Dallas.
Oat Milling Session
Canadian National Millers Association
Talk Title: Canadian Update
Olivier is a public affairs professional with over ten years’ experience in public and private sectors focusing on policy and politics. Olivier is known for his collaborative approach to agricultural policy issues, regulatory affairs and stakeholder engagement. More recently, Olivier provided valuable insight into Canada’s environmental policy agenda with Canadian officials and other industry partners, helped shape the Canadian Agriculture Partnership as an active industry representative and navigated through the challenges resulting from the current pandemic. He brings broad experience working collaboratively with government, trade associations, and within the private sector.
Prior to joining the Canadian National Millers Association, Olivier worked with Cargill Limited, one of the world’s largest providers of agriculture and agri-food products, where he established and helped build the company’s brand, reputation and competitive position in Canada through management of government relations and with Bjornson & Associates, a boutique consulting firm focused on agricultural and food policy issues. Previously to that, he served as policy advisor in the federal civil service.
Olivier holds a Bachelor of Social Science in Political Studies from the University of Ottawa, and a Master of Science in Political Science from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland. He is a former member of the Board of Directors of Food and Beverage Ontario and has sat on many industry committees and roundtables over the past decade. Olivier lives in Chelsea, Quebec with his wife Sophie and sons Theodore, Leonard, and Edouard.
Oat Milling Session
Jose Luis Ramirez
Dr. Ramirez’s research is highly interdisciplinary and focuses on understanding insect vector-pathogen-microbiome interactions to develop sustainable and environmentally friendly biopesticides to control mosquitoes, ticks and other arthropod vectors. Dr. Ramirez joined NCAUR ARS USDA in 2016 and has more than 16 years of experience performing interdisciplinary research in both laboratory and field settings with diverse vector-pathogen systems.
Oat Milling Session
Talk Title: Organic and Non-GMO Markets
Ryan Koory is Mercaris’ Vice President of Economics. With more than a decade of agricultural market research experience, Ryan leads Mercaris’ data partnerships development and identity preserved market data analysis. Prior to Mercaris, he developed market forecasts for global livestock, dairy, and biofuel markets. Ryan has a B.S. in Economics at Missouri State University and studied for his M.S. in Agricultural Economics at the University of Missouri-Columbia.
London Agricultural Commodities, Inc.
Talk Title: Canadian Wheat Markets
Scott Krakar is the Eastern Wheat Merchandising Manager at London Agricultural Commodities, Inc. based in London, Ontario. LAC is a major merchandiser of grains and soybeans, as well as feed ingredients and co-products in both domestic and export markets. LAC also owns and operates two country elevators, markets grain from 15 partner locations and an export terminal in the province. LAC is a subsidiary of Michigan Agricultural Commodities, Inc., a grain merchandising and elevator company with locations throughout the state of Michigan. Scott graduated from the University of Guelph in 2001 with a Bachelor of Commerce Degree in Agricultural Business and has been involved in the Ontario grain business for 22 years.
Wheat Milling Session
Talk Title: Energy Markets
Brian Habacivch began his career in the natural gas industry as the Associate Editor of Gas Daily, the nation’s leading natural gas industry information service and price index. Brian covered the natural gas spot market compiling the daily pricing indices for traders, brokers, producers and end-users of natural gas and regulatory matters at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, D.C.
Brian has worked in natural gas sales and marketing, business development, energy project development, energy consulting and management, and energy market intelligence at Allegheny Energy, Sprague Energy Corp., Fellon-McCord and Associates, and Constellation. Brian was in charge of energy market intelligence, risk, and publications for one of the leading energy consulting firms in the U.S. providing risk management services to a large portfolio of the nation’s leading manufacturers and institutional end-users in the U.S. and E.U. Brian’s comments on energy markets have been featured in
The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, and Industry Week.
Today, Brian is Principal, Commodities Management Group with Constellation Energy Corp (Nasdaq CEG). Constellation is among the leading U.S. electric power generators and is the largest supplier of electric power and natural gas to industrial, commercial, and institutional consumers of energy. Constellation is the largest generator of carbon free energy in the U.S. and operates the largest fleet of nuclear-power generation in the country. The Commodities Management Group, within Constellation, is the energy-market-intelligence function of the company covering electric power, natural gas, crude, coal, and other inputs that affect the direction and pricing of energy markets.
Brian has spoken at hundreds of industry events during his career both in the United States and the European Union and interacts with thousands of industrial, commercial, and institutional consumers of energy. Brian is a past member of the Petrochemical Refiners Association Shale Energy Committee, The Aluminum Association of America, and works closely with The Energy Professionals Association.
Bühler Management AG
Talk Title: Life Cycle Analysis in the Milling Industry
Stefan Prockl currently works as a project manager in Bühler's Environmental Quantification Service. He is responsible for the quantification of environmental impacts of existing and future Bühler solutions, as well as supporting customers in identifying their key levers of sustainable improvements through quantification and reduction of their environmental impacts.
Born and raised in Germany in 1994, Stefan graduated from the Technical University of Vienna with a Masters in mechanical engineering and management, specializing in life cycle assessment. Since joining Bühler in 2021, he has been leading the environmental quantification of several customer projects, as for example alternative meat products or real time carbon accounting. Additionally, he is currently in charge of quantifying Bühler scope 3 downstream emissions.
Talk Title: Global Wheat Markets
Matt Murphy is the Vice President of Global Wheat at The Andersons. Matt has oversight of all domestic and export wheat trading for The Andersons, and also leads The Andersons proprietary trading business. Matt began his career at Louis Dreyfus Commodities on their Wheat Desk in Kansas City in 2008. Matt worked on the Louis Dreyfus wheat desk for 9 years, including the last 4 as Head of North America Wheat where he had responsibility over all origination, logistics, exports, and risk management for the US Wheat business as well as the management of three US export terminals. Matt joined Lansing Trade Group in 2017 to manage a proprietary wheat trading book and strategic International physical wheat trading business. Matt joined The Andersons with the merger of Lansing Trade Group and The Andersons in January 2019.
Wheat Milling Session
Talk Title: Sustainability: What Do Consumers Want
Susannah Enkema is the VP of Research & Insights at Shelton Group, an ERM Group company, the nation’s leading marketing communications agency focused exclusively on energy and the environment. She directs her team in designing primary and secondary, quantitative and qualitative research projects. She plays a key role at the front end in making sure they’re asking the right questions, and then helps dissect the findings and boil them down to the most important insights – the ones that pave the way for recommended marketing strategies and creative approaches. Shelton Group’s clients include Cotton LEADS, Eastman, Environmental Defense Fund, Meta, Pactiv and Bush Brothers.
With 25 years of market research experience working with a range of clients from Hanes to HGTV, Susannah is a pro at helping her clients understand what makes their customers and consumers tick and decoding the marketing and messaging that will spark action.
Bioceres Crop Solutions
Alexandre Garcia has a background in Biology and Molecular Genetics, with PhD in Agronomy and MBA in Strategic Management. Has been working on the seed industry with genetics, breeding and biotechnology for 17 years with different roles in R&D, Management, Licenses and Innovation. Today he is the Managing Director of the Seeds & Traits business unit of Bioceres Crop Solutions.
Wheat Milling Session
Kansas State University Foundation
Talk Title: KSU Update
Kerry Wefald serves as the Senior Director of Development for the College of Agriculture, Kansas State University Foundation. In her role, she optimizes relationships with food, agriculture, and business networks to support philanthropy for the college including the university’s current Ag Innovation Initiative. Prior to joining the KSU Foundation in 2022, Wefald served as the Director of Agricultural Marketing for the Kansas Department of Agriculture supporting domestic and international market development initiatives for 19 Kansas-grown and value-added commodities. During this tenure, Wefald also served as president of the North American Agricultural Marketing Officials professional organization.
Known as a foundation leader, Wefald believes that doing the little things right day in and out will lead to positive attention and growth opportunities in the workplace. Originally from a diversified crop and livestock farm in eastern Kansas, Wefald received both bachelor’s and master’s degrees from K-State prior to beginning her professional career in supply chain management with Neiman Marcus in Longview, Texas.