Rewatch sessions on demand via the networking platform until April 19.

Day 1: Monday March 18, 2024

Breakfast Briefing // Building Frameworks for Regenerative Animal Agriculture

In complex farming systems, how can food groups, farmers and ranchers work together to develop practices and frameworks to create nature and climate positive actions for animal ag?

Renée Vassilos, Director of Agriculture Innovation, THE NATURE CONSERVANCY

Dana Ehrlich, Founder, VERDE FARMS
Paul Greive, Co-Founder & VP Sales & Marketing, PASTUREBIRD

Opening Remarks - Rethink Events
Keynote Welcome Address // FDA Propels the Frontiers of Animal Health Innovation

Tristan Colonius,
Chief Veterinary Officer & Deputy Director for Science Policy, FDA

Opening Plenary // Building Collaboration around Innovative Solutions in Animal Health
  • What strategies are being employed to facilitate greater collaboration between animal health
    companies, start-ups, investors, and food producers to advance the development of new treatments
    for animal health?
  • In response to heightened concerns about zoonotic diseases among the general public, what specific
    measures can food producers adopt to establish a more resilient animal farming system and a secure
    supply chain?
  • How can producers of animal nutrition and feed additives actively contribute to reducing the
    necessity for medical interventions in animals?
  • As antimicrobial resistance increasingly threatens both animal and human health, how does an
    improved understanding of animal health play a role in reducing reliance on antibiotics and antiparasitic medications?

Spencer Swayze, Managing Director, PAINE SCHWARTZ

Jeffrey Silverstein, Acting Associate Administrator, USDA ARS
Mike Leventini,
SVP Live Production & General Manager, PERDUE FARMS
Rimma Driscoll, EVP & Head of Global Strategy, Commercial and Business Development, ZOETIS

Case Studies // Targeting the Gut: Precise Solutions for the Microbiome
  • How is a deeper knowledge of gut composition enabling the development of pro and pre-biotic and
    metabolite products to give targeted adjustments to the entire microbiome?
  • What datasets are available to help the discovery of products that are beneficial for animal health,
    welfare, sustainability, or productivity? How can the sector leverage this data to improve
  • Are there innovations that the sector can harness from the human health sector that can help
    shorten product development cycles and build precise solutions for animal care?


Aaron Schacht, CEO, BIOMEDIT
Christopher Belnap,
Leonardo Gondim,
Strategy, Portfolio & SMT Director, CARGILL ANIMAL NUTRTION

Fireside Chat // Building Resilience: Rearing Healthier Animals through Novel Products
  • With a growing number of novel products and technologies being commercialised, how is their efficacy on the farm meeting clinical expectations?
  • mRNA vaccines are now being used commercially in Swine operations, and in trials for other species, what is the potential for new technologies such as these to revolutionize animal care and protect against existing and emerging diseases?
  • How are novel techniques allowing for improvements in on-farm health whilst also improving welfare for animals with less stress and fewer interventions?
  • What is needed to continue developing and scaling these novel treatments and technologies to expand the toolbox for improving animal health in food production?

Dave Summa, Venture Partner, GENOA VC

Tracy Raines, Vice President of Research and Development, MAZEN ANIMAL HEALTH
Tristan Colonius, Chief Veterinary Officer & Deputy Director for Science Policy, FDA

Networking Coffee Break

Hosted by: 

Panel // Tools for the Climate Crisis: Accounting for Emissions and Environmental Impact in Meat and Dairy Production
  • How can the supply chain collaborate to ensure accurate accounting of the environmental and
    climate impact of animal agriculture?
  • What new and emerging tools are currently available for measuring soil carbon, GHG emissions and
    water usage?
  • What challenges arise in ensuring sound stewardship on extensive ranches and farms and how can
    food producers share knowledge to continually enhance best practices?
  • With more accurate accounting, does that open the door to carbon credit schemes for livestock
    farming, and is this a desirable opportunity?

Marilyn Hershey, Chair, DAIRY MANAGEMENT INC.

Darrin Monteiro, VP Sustainability & Membership, CALIFORNIA DAIRIES
Kyle McKinney, VP of Innovation, ALLTECH
Kerryann Kocher, CEO, VYTELLE
Frank Mitloehner, Professor, UC DAVIS

Fireside Chat // Connecting the Agri-Food Chain for Circular Food Production
  • How can food waste and agricultural side streams be valorized to make high-quality feed to reduce
    the environmental impact of poultry and swine feed sourcing?
  • Considering the logistical and environmental challenges associated with manure management in
    meat production, what are the most effective methods for upcycling manure?
  • What are the incentives for the uptake of circular resource use, and is it the role of the private sector
    or public regulation to make sustainable practices economically viable?

Sarah Nolet, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, TENACIOUS VENTURES

Justin Ransom, Director, Sustainable Food Strategy, TYSON FOODS
Kate Worley, VP of Sustainability, DENALI
Maye Walraven,
Chief Impact Officer & North America General Manager, INNOVAFEED

Panel // From Academic Trial to Commercial Use: How can the Adoption of Methane Inhibitors Be Maximized for Impact?
  • Now that the first global commercial use cases of methane inhibitors in cattle have started, are they
    meeting the expectations set by laboratory trials?
  • What are the obstacles to scaling methane inhibitors for widespread use and how can the sector
    collaborate to accelerate this process?
  • With better understanding of the impact of genetics, health and nutrition on enteric methane
    production, can methane reduction practices be combined to produce larger reductions in
  • How can commercial incentives be implemented to encourage farmers and ranchers to adopt
    methane reduction practices in cattle rearing?

Sarah Klopatek, Chief Livestock Scientist, JBS

Steve Meller, CEO, CH4 GLOBAL
Thomas Hafner, Founder, MOOTRAL
Meredith Harrison, Lead Scientific Adviser, C-LOCK
Tamara Loiselle, CEO & Founder, SYNERGRAZE

Presentation // Genetics & Sustainability: Optimizing Crossbreeding for Dairy-Beef Calves
  • How is improved genomic understanding allowing breeders to maximize the value out of crossbred
  • What advantages do dairy-beef cross cows have for sustainability, animal welfare and ultimately, the
    bottom line for dairy farmers?

Matthew Cleveland, Director of Global Beef Sustainability & Product Development, GENUS

Networking Lunch
Panel // Preparing for the Future: Improving Automation and Precision Systems to Boost Production with Less Labor
  • With precision farming solutions becoming more commonplace in meat and dairy production, what
    lessons have been learned from early adopters that can help guide early-stage companies in
    developing more effective products?
  • As automation helps reduce interventions on farms and decreases the need for labor hours, how can
    livestock operations reduce costs while still improving care and efficiency in meat and dairy
  • On-farm data is crucial to the development of many precision farming systems, how can we ensure
    that those developing products for animal farming have access to the right quantities and quality of
  • What factors need to be considered when designing automated and precision systems to allow
    productive use on all sizes of farm operations?
  • How can the sector ensure that labor forces have the skills and knowledge necessary to extract the
    most value out of precision livestock platforms?

Aidan Connolly, President, AGRITECH CAPITAL

Lars Bergmann, EVP Digital Services, DELAVAL
William Herring,

Lightning Talks // Applying AI to Animal Ag: Intelligent Insights for Improved Care
  • How is AI being applied to animal agriculture to help improve the welfare and health of animals in barns and parlors?
  • Where is AI able to monitor and assist the feeding process to ensure efficient use of resources and create a more sustainable supply chain?

Rob Trice, Founding Partner, BETTER FOOD VENTURES

Leonardo Sá, Head of Global Precision Service, DSM-FIRMENICH & Former CEO, PRODAP
Claudia Roessler,
Director Agriculture Strategic Partnerships, MICROSOFT
Stefan Scherer,

Roundtable Discussions

Join focused, interactive discussion groups to deep dive into topics most relevant to you and your business.

  • Improving Emissions Reports: Connecting Industry and Academia for Accurate Accounts
    Host: Sarah Klopatek, Chief Livestock Scientist, JBS
  • Carrot, Stick or Collaboration: Ensuring Companies Deliver on Climate Promises
    Host: James Pearce, VP Biology, CH4 GLOBAL
  • Carbon Credits: Finding Viable Applications in Animal Agriculture
    Hosts: Darrin Montiero, VP Sustainability & Membership, CALIFORNIA DAIRIES & Paul Myer, CEO, ATHIAN 
  • Biotechnology Innovation: Accelerating Development Through Partnerships and Investment
    Host: Yanniv Dorone, VP, FALL LINE CAPITAL
  • Environmental and Financial Sustainability: Breeding Cattle for Increased Productivity
    Host: Lee Leachman, CEO, LEACHMAN CATTLE
  • Smart Ag Solutions: The Role of AI in Animal Health
    Host: Steve Brody, CEO, BIOCONNECT IOWA 
  • Attracting Producer Partnerships: Communicating the Potential of Start-Ups
    Host: Jerrod Westfahl, Chief Strategy Officer, INNOVATIVE LIVESTOCK SERVICES
  • End-to-End Communication: Improving Entire Supply Chain Emission Reductions
    Host: Justin Ransom, Director, Sustainable Food Strategy, TYSON FOODS
  • Beyond the Price Tag: Unleashing Value in Animal Protein Production
    Host: Jan Bouten, Partner, INNOVA
  • Beef Cattle Sustainability: Utilizing Technology for Improved Health, Breeding, and Carbon Verification
    Host: Kevin Biffert, CEO, 701X
  • Investment in Latin America: Exploring Opportunities to Scale in LATAM
    Host: Pedro Sampaio,
    Corporate Venture Capital Investment Manager, MINERVA FOODS
Networking Coffee Break
Start-Up Showcase

Six of the most innovative early-stage start-ups take to the stage to give a quickfire pitch to a panel of
investors followed by audience Q&A.

Jan Bouten, Partner, INNOVA
James Caffyn, Partner, LEVER VC

Laxmi Stebbins Wordham, Chief Growth Officer, BRIGHT FEEDS
Andrew Minarick, CEO & Founder, BOVEYE
Lucas Jagodnik, Co-Founder & CEO, APELIE ROBOTICS
Kim Livingston, Chief Research Officer, OPTUM IMMUNITY

Investor Panel // Finding the Right Funding Models for Start-Ups in Animal AgTech
  • Will the reduction in capital availability cause start-ups in the agricultural sectors to mature and
    focus more on commercial targets to attract capital in the new economic environment?
  • With longer development cycles for start-ups working in biotechnology and animal health, what is
    the best funding model to ensure long-term support for start-ups?
  • How can ag-specific investors in the sector work with generalists or climate investors to attract more
    funding to start-ups working to improve livestock farming?
  • Are external investors becoming more knowledgeable about the agri-food sector, and therefore
    becoming shrewder in their investments?
  • Beyond the short term, what are the expected levels of capital coming into the animal ag sector, and
    how can investors and entrepreneurs work together to attract more funding, and more funding
    types into animal protein production?

Maarten Goossens, Founding Partner, ANTERRA CAPITAL

Cristina Rohr, Managing Director, S2G VENTURES
Duane Cantrell, CEO & Managing Partner, FULCRUM GLOBAL CAPITAL
Tim Hassler, Managing Director, LEWIS & CLARK AGRIFOOD
Philip Erlanger, Managing Partner, ALIMENT CAPITAL

Happy Hour Networking Drinks

Day 2: Tuesday March 19, 2024

Workshop 1: Accelerating the Digital Transition of Animal Agriculture

Welcoming Remarks
Opening Presentations
  • Group 1: Is Funding the Main Barrier to the Uptake of Precision Livestock Technology on the Farm?
    Host: Rob Trice, Founding PartnerBETTER FOOD VENTURES
  • Group 2: With Data Quality Being a Key Factor in the Development of PLF Products, How Can the Sector Share Data to Improve Efficacy?
    Host: Enrico Carta, CEO, CYNOMYS
  • Group 3: 3. How Are Agtech Adoption Cycles Unique and What Does That Mean for Founders and Investors?
  • Group 4: Using systems integration and data standardization to improve customer success with precision livestock farming (PLF)
Coffee Break
Small-Group Workshop Sessions
  • Group 1: Is Funding the Main Barrier to the Uptake of Precision Livestock Technology on the Farm?

    – When looking at the implementation of PLF in food production, what are the major barriers to uptake that need to be overcome?
    – What funding models exist to assist the introduction of new PLF solutions and help improve outcomes in health, welfare and productivity?
    – Where can PLF integrate with automated systems to further increase returns from their introduction?
  • Group 2: With Data Quality Being a Key Factor in the Development of PLF Products, How can the Sector Share Datasets to Improve Efficacy?

    – Who can PLF companies partner with to gain access to quality datasets to aid the design and function of their platforms?
    – When companies are profiting from on-farm data, how can we ensure that the data owners are being fairly compensated for their data?
    – Are there successful models from companies with experience in animal production or PLF development that can be used as best practice for the sector?
  • Group 3: How Are Agtech Adoption Cycles Unique and What Does That Mean for Founders and Investors?

    – What are the implications for founders?
    – What are the implications for investors?
    – What are ways to accelerate adoption in livestock?
    – What are ways to work with dynamics of agtech adoption cycles instead of against?
  • Group 4: Using systems integration and data standardization to improve customer success with precision livestock farming (PLF)– How can we utilize systems integration to simplify and improve the customer experience? What are the biggest opportunities and roadblocks?
    – Can data inputs be standardized across platforms to increase PLF uptake/usage, ease of use and flexibility for customers? What is the first step?

The workshop hosts share the highlights and key talking points from their sessions with the wider audience to shed light on the opportunities, challenges and successes discussed in the workshop sessions and give food for thought for the year ahead.

Workshop 2: Reaching Net Zero in Livestock Production

Welcoming Remarks
Opening Presentations
  • Group 1: How Can the Sector Build Sustainability and Profitability through the Circular Economy?
  • Group 2: How Can We Receive More Accurate and Reliable Data to Inform Decisions on Climate-Smart Practices?
    Host: James Clement, SVP & GM Grass and Rangeland, EARTHOPTICS
  • Group 3: With Regenerative Agriculture Practices Becoming Widespread, What Can be Done to Achieve Desired Outcomes?
    Host: Steve Wooten, 2021/2022 Chair, THE U.S. ROUNDTABLE FOR SUSTAINABLE BEEF
  • Group 4: Where are the Opportunities to Reduce the Impact of Swine and Poultry’s Largest Emissions Source: Feed?
    Host: Kerryann Kocher, CEO, VYTELLE
Coffee Break
Small-Group Workshop Sessions
  • Group 1: How can the Sector Build Sustainability and Profitability through the Circular Economy?

    – Following the new focus on creating circular food systems, are there by-products and side streams from animal production that are currently underutilized and can be sold for increased revenues?
    – What role does supply chain data play in ensuring efficient and productive use of animal agriculture by-products?
  • Group 2: How can the Accuracy of On-Farm Data be Improved to Inform Better Decision Making for Climate-Smart Practice?

    – What new tools are becoming available to allow easier and more accurate accounting for supply chain emissions?
    – Where are the win-wins in environmental accounting that can provide benefits beyond improving sustainability?
    – Through carbon credits and other innovative products, is there an opportunity to build new revenue streams through improved carbon accounting?
  • Group 3: With Regenerative Agriculture Practices Becoming Widespread, What can be Done to Achieve Desired Outcomes?– How can the sector build frameworks to inform best practice for regenerative agriculture?
    – With wide variation in geographies and climates how can we ensure that regenerative agricultural practices are adaptable and beneficial for a wider range of contexts?
    – What are the key KPIs that need to be considered for measuring the effectiveness of regenerative agriculture?
  • Group 4: How big an issue are enteric methane emissions, what can we do about it and  what is genetic selection’s role in reducing them?
    – When reducing enteric methane, what are the trade-offs in performance and productivity and how will producers be compensated for reduction initiatives?
    – What key questions are being overlooked in the discussions around the reduction of enteric methane?
    – What are the tools and practices enabling individual producers to make an instant impact on enteric methane, and how can the wider sector work together for longer-term reductions?

The workshop hosts share the highlights and key talking points from their sessions with the wider audience to shed light on the opportunities, challenges and successes discussed in the workshop sessions and give food for thought for the year ahead.

Afternoon Tour: UC Davis Animal Agriculture Facilities

UC Davis Animal Agriculture Facilities

Join us for an exciting Innovation in Action tour of the UC Davis animal agriculture facilities, showcasing cutting-edge research in methane reduction and the excellence of their Animal Science program. During the afternoon tour, you will have the chance to:

  • Explore the UC Davis Beef Barn
  • Visit the Robert Mondavi Institute

Find out more