MU to host Food, Fuel and Society symposium

Thursday, August 12, 2010 | 4:21 p.m. CDT; updated 8:19 p.m. CDT, Thursday, August 12, 2010

COLUMBIA – MU will play host to a daylong symposium titled "Food, Fuel and Society: Stories From a Changing Landscape." The event will be headlined by NPR science reporter Ira Flatow.

The day will be a collaborative effort among three Mizzou Advantage initiatives: Media of the Future, Food for the Future, and Sustainable Energy. Discussions throughout the day will be led by faculty members from the School of Journalism; the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; the College of Arts and Sciences; MU Extension and the Reynolds Journalism Institute.

The event will be at 9 a.m. on Oct. 12 at the Reynolds Journalism Institute at MU.

Discussion topics will include ethanol demands, food safety and the local foods movement. NPR's Flatow will be providing his expertise in navigating issues that journalists will come across.

"It will be a day to learn about the issues from people working on the front lines," said Janet Saidi, an assistant professor of radio and television at the Missouri School of Journalism and news director of NPR affiliate KBIA-FM.

The event will also mark the launch of Harvest Public Media, a collaboration of public radio stations in Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri. The stations will report on food and fuel issues across the area to facilitate the dissemination of accurate and understandable information, Saidi said.

"Our goal is to make complicated issues compelling and clear," Saidi said. The local centers aim to shed light on untold stories using new media.

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