Calling all farmers and ranchers 

  Tuesday, February 4, 2020 11:00 AM
  Science and Technology, News

Pittsburg, KS


FARMS, a first-time workshop to be held in Pittsburg, Kansas, on Feb. 26-28, is aimed at bringing farmers, ranchers, and scientists together so they can be of help to each other and their industries 

Tim Conner, division director for the National Institute of Food & Agriculture, will be the keynote speaker for the workshop — a joint venture by Pittsburg State University’s Kansas Polymer Research Center and Virginia Tech’s Macromolecules Innovation Institute.   

It will be held at Block22 in downtown Pittsburg, and registration is being accepted now. 

Organizer Tim Dawsey, executive director for the advancement of applied science and technology at the KPRC, said scientists want to know what agricultural biproducts and agricultural waste the farmers and ranchers generate that could, through research and innovation, be of value.  

For example, they’ve discovered ways to create batteries from coffee grounds, rigid foams from chicken fat, and flexible foam from soybean oil — a technology now used by Ford Motor Company, among others. 

“What we’re looking for is to uncover more opportunities like that,” Dawsey said. 

Scientists also want to help farmers and ranchers solve challenges through innovation. 

“We want to know what they deal with from the time they lace their boots in the morning to the time they turn their tractors off,” Dawsey said. 

The workshop agenda will include an evening reception and keynote address, a full day of workshops with breakout sessions facilitated by county extension agents, and a day of proposal writing and planning for scientists.  

The event is sponsored by Girard National Bank and Kansas Farm Bureau. 

Details: 620-235-4112. Registration:

About the Kansas Polymer Research Center 

Located on the campus of Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kansas, the KPRC is unique: It combines internationally recognized scientists from industry with academic laboratory resources and the processing expertise of PSU’s College of Technology in a state-of-the-art research facility.  

The KPRC specializes in vegetable oil-based polymer research and development with a strong core competence in polyurethanes and electroactive materials. KPRC scientists work with industrial partners, state and federal agencies, and producer associations on developing and commercializing PSU’s intellectual property.