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Land O’Lakes COO Beth Ford on Navigating Ag’s Disrupted Business Environment

Will give her perspective on the issues and why she believes ag should be a top career choice for women

Beth Ford, group executive vice president and chief operating officer at Land O’Lakes, will be the keynote speaker at this year’s annual Women in Agribusiness Summit, September 26-28, here at the Hyatt Regency.

Ford, who has spent the last several years negotiating the changing dynamics of the agri-food business, will present on opening day of the conference on “Navigating Ag’s Disrupted Business Environment – Why Ag is Still Right for Women.” She’ll give her perspective on the issues and why she believes ag should be a top career choice for women, in addition to some tips on how preparation, confidence and resilience are the keys to success.

“We have a challenge in recruiting talented individuals to agribusiness,” said Ford. “We need events like the Women in Agribusiness Summit to encourage and equip both women and men to enter this exciting growth industry. Ag presents numerous exciting career opportunities for the best and the brightest.”

At Land O’Lakes, Ford is responsible for the Purina Animal Nutrition and Dairy Foods businesses and is the chief supply chain officer, with accountability for all supply chain, operations, IT and R&D functions across the Land O'Lakes, Inc., enterprise.
In her 30 years of experience as a global operator, Ford has held senior and line leadership positions in seven companies across six industries, including energy (Mobil Oil), Consumer Packaged Goods (Pepsi/Pepsi Bottling Group), QSR (Perseco), publishing (Scholastic and Hachette), chemicals (International Flavors and Fragrances) and now food production and agribusiness.

Ford sits on the Board of Directors for two publicly traded companies: Clearwater Papers, Inc., and PACCAR, Inc., both of which are recognized in the Fortune 150 and 750 lists, respectively. She also is a member of the board of the National Federation of Milk Producers (NMPF). Additionally, she sits on multiple non-profit boards, including Greater Twin Cities United Way, the Go Red for Women event for the American Heart Association in Minneapolis, and SCM World.
A native of Sioux City, Iowa, Ford earned an MBA from Columbia University Business School and a BBA from Iowa State University.

The Women in Agribusiness Summit, now in its sixth year, has nurtured an agribusiness community where attendees express their opinions, learn from others and share best practices, all in support of women’s advancement. This year’s event will focus on the fact that success, regardless of one’s gender, is attainable the more one ‘Knows Their Business Better.’ The Summit will provide unparalleled networking opportunities with influential executives, spot-on professional development, and presentations on the latest trends, outlooks and innovations in ag.

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