An international conference on feed efficiency in swine will bring experts from around the world to share their knowledge on this very timely and important topic in early November. Iowa State University (ISU) animal science professor John Patience is excited about this program that focuses nearly two full days specifically on feed efficiency. With the size and quality of the 2011 corn crop a growing concern, the timing of this conference could not be better.

Patience said the response to the conference from the swine feed and efficiency world has been positive beyond expectation, and encouraged people to book rooms at the Omaha Hilton as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

“Our objective is to provide in a single forum the current state of the art on all aspects of feed efficiency in growing/finishing swine,” he said. “With more than a dozen diverse topics ranging from in-barn management to nutrition to genetic selection on the agenda, this is a unique opportunity.”

The conference, set for Nov. 8-9 at the Hilton Hotel/Qwest Center in Omaha, Neb., is the first major activity of a $5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) coordinated by ISU and directed by Patience. He’s joined on the conference planning committee by ISU Iowa Pork Industry Center director John Mabry, and Kansas State University (KSU) swine specialists Joel DeRouchey and Mike Tokach.

To further enhance the quality and relevance of the conference, speakers have been selected from around the world, from ISU and KSU, and from the industry. The two-day agenda features 15 sessions presented by experts from five countries, including four U.S. states, with affiliations to a variety of private industry and educational institutions. With specific topics ranging from the influence of feed processing on feed efficiency to the role of dietary amino acids (or energy) on feed efficiency to the role of genetic selection on feed efficiency, the primary audience is those involved in the more technical aspects of pork production including pork producers, nutritionists, veterinarians and geneticists.

The registration fee includes lunches on Tuesday and Wednesday and a reception on Tuesday. It also includes a binder of presentations to be handed out at the meeting, plus a bound book on feed efficiency in swine to be mailed to attendees in mid-2012. Early registration is $175 per person and $50 per student, with a deadline of 5 p.m. CDT on Oct. 5. After that time and date, the fee increases to $275 person and $100 per student. Full details on the conference, including the full program and registration forms are available on the conference website:

A block of rooms at the Hilton Hotel has been reserved at a special rate for this conference. These reservations must be made via the link on this conference web page,, in order to receive the special rate of $119 per night and discounted Internet access fees. This rate is available until Oct. 17 or until the group block is sold out, whichever happens first.

“The objective of the NIFA project is to improve the efficiency with which the pig converts feed into edible consumer products. Feed is increasingly expensive and food on this planet is becoming increasingly scarce, so it’s very important that all aspects of agriculture continue to improve efficiency,” Patience said. “This conference will help us determine the status of current knowledge and guide future research to improve feed efficiency in swine.”