Organic Wheat Conference

HPI’s Organic Wheat Conference
January 29-30. 2019
Hilton Garden Inn, Manhattan, KS


For hotel accommodations and to RSVP, please call Julie Owens at 785-539-0255.

For questions, contact Dusti Gallagher at


About the Conference

Wheat is one of the most widely consumed grains at home and around the globe. It is vital to the U.S. agricultural economy and can play an important role in meeting ever-increasing global needs for food, feed, and fiber. Yet, there has been very little time, attention, and resources devoted to breeding wheat varieties that are well suited for these organically managed lands. Right now, there is a huge opportunity for wheat producers to fill a need in the vastly growing organic market while bolstering their economic bottom line. The long-term goal is to increase farmers’ access to regionally adapted wheat genetics to optimize success of organic agriculture. Therefore, HPI proposes to initiate, plan and host an industry-wide conference to identify the organic breeding research needs for Hard Winter Wheat in the Great Plains. This conference proposal addresses the Plant Breeding for Agricultural Production Program Area, Priority Code A1141.

The objectives of the conference are to 1) Bring together key regional supply chain stakeholders to discuss the challenges and opportunities per industry segment; 2) Assess the feasibility of developing an independent breeding platform that delivers locally adapted organic varieties; 3) Develop a concise list of priority breeding targets and traits for organic wheat varieties; 4) Establish a strategy to build an organic breeding platform. The outcome of the conference will be an industry developed White Paper that will serve as the roadmap for building a successful organic breeding platform for the Great Plains region.

Attendees: Anyone in the wheat industry with an interest in producing, handling, marketing, and processing wheat for the organic market.



Heartland Plant Innovations'
Organic Wheat Conference Agenda
January 29-30, 2019
Hilton Garden Inn, Manhattan, KS

Identifying Priorities and Opportunities to Developing Organic Wheat Breeding in the Great Plains

Day 1: Current trends in Organic wheat: Challenges/opportunities in individual market segments

8:30 a.m.       Welcome and Introductions, Dusti Gallagher, HPI

  • Introduction of Dave Green, Conference Facilitator

9:00 a.m.       Trends in Organic Foods: Consumer Demands and Desires

  • Q&A Session

10:00 a.m.       Break

10:15 a.m.       Industry Segment Panel Discussions

  • Panel 1: End-users: Market Opportunities and Demand Constraints
  • Q&A Session
  • Panel 2:  Seed & Grain Producers: Organic Production Push/Pull
  • Q&A Session

12:15 p.m.       Lunch

1:00 p.m.       Industry Segment Panel Discussions (continued)

  • Panel 3: Agronomy, Management, and Extension: What Challenges?
  • Q&A Session
  • Panel 4: Breeders: What germplasm do we have and how do we share
  • Q&A Session

2:45 p.m.        Refreshment Break

3:00 p.m.        Panel 5: Other Perspectives: Trials and Tribulations of Organic Systems

3:45 p.m.       Break

4:00 p.m.       Discussion wrap up & Day 2 prep, Dave Green

5:00 p.m.       Evening Announcements & Adjourn

6:00 p.m.       Evening reception (light hors d’oeuvres) and tours, Kansas Wheat Innovation Center



Day 2:  Development of an organic wheat breeding platform: A Strategic Approach

(seed production, producer education, production management, end-use, marketing and student/post-doc education challenges)

7:30 a.m.       Hot Breakfast Buffet

8:30 a.m.       Welcome, announcements & expectations, Dave Green

8:45 a.m.       Grand Challenges for Organic Breeding: Identify top 5 priorities for breeding varieties to optimize organic wheat production

  • Small Group Session 1: Green

10:15 a.m.       Small Group Session 1 Reports

10:45 a.m.       Other Grand Challenges: Identify top 5 priorities to optimize impact of varieties developed for organic production

  • Small Group Session 2: Green

12:15 p.m.       Small Group Session 2 Reports

12:45 p.m.       Lunch

1:30 p.m.       Group discussion

2:00 p.m.         Identification of Small group themes & outcomes

  • Industry white paper process & writing, Steven Graham & Mary Lou Peter

3:00 p.m.        Closing remarks, Dusti Gallagher



For hotel accommodations and to RSVP, please call Julie Owens at 785-539-0255.

For questions, contact Dusti Gallagher at