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November 17, 2022
Highlights From the Agricultural Law Section Presentations at the IBA Annual Conference

The International Bar Association (IBA) Annual Conference took place in Miami between October 30 and November 4, 2022. During the Annual Conference, the Agricultural Law Section (ALS) welcomed attendees to several events: an open committee meeting on October 31 and two sessions on current topics in agricultural law on October 31 and November 3.
 
During the open committee meeting, ALS Officers discussed matters of interest and future activities. The committee meeting was attended by several ALS Officers, such as Co-Chair, Nusrat Hassan; Senior Vice Chair, Fabrizio Paratore; Publication and Newsletter Editor, Adeniji A. Oni; and Member of the ALS Advisory Board and former ALS Chair, Sara Moyo.

The first presentation, on October 31, was titled “Agricultural Food Products Availability and Pricing in Pandemic Times -- Has Anything Changed?” The session explored the challenges faced by farmers, food businesses, consumers, and environmental institutions and entities when dealing with the global tensions that concern the production and supply of food commodities and products, in relation to farming costs and financing. The panel, moderated by Fabrizio Paratore, discussed strategic and legal solutions to be adopted to prevent present and future stress conditions from happening throughout the healthy and less healthy areas of the world. This session’s speakers were former U.S. Senator Byron L. Dorgan (D-ND), now with ArentFox Schiff in Washington, D.C.; Courtney Esko, from TreeHouse Foods in Oak Brook, Illinois; Simon Hotte from FIDAL in Lyon, France; and Adeniji A. Oni from Niji Oni & Co. in Lagos, Nigeria.
 
The second presentation, on November 3, during the session “Sustainability Focus: Sustainable Investment in Agriculture -- The Role Lawyers Play,” was titled “Responsible Land-Based Investments in Agriculture: Africa and Asia-Pacific.” The session explored the current regulatory framework for sustainable and responsible investment in agriculture, with a focus on Africa and the Asia-Pacific region and how this can contribute to the mitigation of the climate crisis. It analyzed how lawyers in the private and public sectors can use a variety of legal tools, including environmental and human rights law, to promote sustainable and responsible investment in agriculture within their national contexts. The session was moderated by Sara Moyo and Nusrat Hassan, and the speakers were Adeniji A. Oni and Valerie Anne Johnston, from the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN), in Rome, Italy. In response to positive feedback, ALS plans to organize a presentation on the same topic covering Central and South America.
 
The ALS is a newly formed Section for those interested in any area of the ever-evolving area of agricultural law. Agricultural law covers a comprehensive and dynamic legal practice area, in particular relating to:
  • Agriculture land usage;
  • Ownership and farmer’s rights;
  • Seed law, plant variety law, and biotechnology; and
  • Food trade, food safety, and food liability.

Please contact the IBA Membership Office at www.ibanet.org/membership/joinTheIBA if you are interested in joining, or e-mail lbergeson@lawbc.com or nusrat@linklegal.in for more information about the ALS.

In photo: Alfred L.J. Page, Liaison Officer; Fabrizio Paratore, Senior Vice Chair; Sara Moyo, Member of the Advisory Board and former Chair; Jan Holthuis, Member of the Advisory Board; Nusrat Hassan, Co-Chair; and Adeniji A. Oni, Publication and Newsletter Editor.


 
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