UACES Facebook Division of Agriculture hosts national value-added conference in Arkansas
skip to main content

Division of Agriculture hosts National Value Added conference in Arkansas

Nov.10, 2017

Division of Agriculture hosts national value-added conference in Arkansas

By Emily Thompson 

U of A System Division of Agriculture

Fast Facts:

  • Ready-to-eat foods are becoming increasingly popular, making value-added products an important marketing resource.
  • Division of Agriculture will host the Nation Value Added Conference Nov. 14-16.
  • The conference will teach attendees how to use value added as a marketing tool and the latest in food system innovations.

(284 words)

Download Word version

LITTLE ROCK— Fewer people are taking the time to prepare their meals at home. According to the USDA, 43 percent of all U.S. food spending was spent on eating out in 2012. In today’s world of ready-to-eat products, it can be a struggle for farmers to maintain their profitability and cause them to search for ways to keep up.

One way to attract consumers is by offering value-added products. The USDA defines a value-added product as a product that has had a change in the physical state of the product, like making strawberries into jam or the production of a product in a manner that enhances its value, as demonstrated through a business plan. 

National Value Added Conference graphic

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture will host the 19th annual National Value-Added Conference. The conference will be held on Nov. 14-16 at the Wyndham Riverfront Little Rock, 2 Riverfront Place, North Little Rock.

“Attendees will have an opportunity to network with national leaders driving innovations in local food systems from around the country,” said Ron Rainey, professor and extension economist for the Division of Agriculture. “The topics addressed and cross section of attendees from both the public and private sector should allow each attendee to leave the conference with new resources and collaborations to take back to their respective states.”

The conference will offer a variety of lectures and workshops to show how to take advantage of value-added as a key marketing component and all the latest in food system innovation. Presenters include business owners, government officials and non-profit organizations.

“All entities will highlight impactful management practices/systems and innovative approaches as well as the latest resources,” Rainey said.

Researchers, extension educators and specialists, farmers, producers, policy makers, rural development specialists, state officials and anyone else interested in what impacts the value added of food and agricultural systems are encouraged to attend.

Registration closes Monday, Nov. 13, at noon and costs $150.

To register or more information, visit

About the Division of Agriculture
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system. 

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.  

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action institution.  If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need materials in another format, please contact as soon as possible.  Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay. 


# # #

Media Contact: Mary Hightower
Dir. of Communication Services
U of A System Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service
(501) 671-2126

Related Links