Greetings my SVMA colleagues,
I want to thank Leila first for the sage advice I received, the sense of duty to each other is the backbone of the comradery on which the SVMA has been built. To that Leila offered up quite the exciting year, the great tales from all that gathered in Belize to the wonderful and broad range of experiences on our Alaska outing. We danced the nights away and learned so much during the days. And we all need to see the videos of Richard and Nino at the Alaskan Wildlife Center.
The 2017 summer trip is coming up very quickly. Please go to the SVMA website, http://skisvma.org/summer-meeting-2017/ and review all the videos of the North Umpqua National Forest and the Steamboat Inn. It is a beautiful setting for a summer gathering. Whether you are a hiker, biker, bird watcher extraordinaire, wish to fish the most elusive summer run steelhead or want a quiet getaway, this setting is beautiful, unique and award winning.
The Steamboat Inn, is holding their entire housing for the SVMA until MAY 1, then the rooms will be released. Please call the Steamboat Inn and book your room now. The nightly dining at The Steamboat is a long-honored tradition, the following link gives the details: http://www.thesteamboatinn.com/dining. The housing options include the streamside cabins without cooking but with the river running below your deck, the cottages with their quaint English feel and the homes on the Umpqua about ½ mile from the Inn.
Details will be coming on the guide service for the steelhead fishing. For those looking for an intense mountain biking experience we will have a link to Cog Wild and the excellent service they provide guiding bikers through the North Umpqua trails.
Our winter trip will be to the Sun Peaks Resort in Kamloops, BC. In Canada, the resort is second only to Whistler for skiable terrain. We are staying at the Sun Peaks Grand Hotel and Conference Center whose amenities include ski in-ski out and a variety of room choices under the same roof, we will be within easy walking distances from the Grand Hotel to the Nordic Center, the skating rink, village shops and restaurants.
The theme for Karnival will be Animal Farm. The path of our CE will be one less traveled. My career has been dedicated to the animal agriculture industry where there continues to be a growing disconnect between the farm and the fork. It is time for voices from within animal agriculture to reach out and to connect with increasing urban population that is less and less aware of the issues involved in producing their food. Our CE effort will address the interrelationships that are developing between animal agriculture, a growing population, the environment and the climate. We will explore these issues following the principles in the One Health Initiative and those espoused in “Towards Sustainable Agricultural Systems in the 21st Century” (2010). Animal agriculture is responsive to forces of the marketplace and to government policy in the forms of regulations and laws. Understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of production systems and the understanding the science that affects these systems is critical to the choices made at the marketplace and in developing constructive laws and regulatory policy involving agricultural production. Production systems have numerous labels: “sustainable”, “industrial” “factory farm”, “organic”, “conventional” and “CAFO” to name a few. This CE effort will address viewpoints that apply to animal agriculture including genetic engineering, environmental concerns (air, water, land), life cycle analysis and animal welfare. With a better understanding comes the hope of better marketplace choices and improved laws and regulations that are beneficial to the public and to those involved in the production of food. You are my experiment and your input will help shape further efforts to inform the public.