Cattle producers are looking forward to the chance to directly visit with consumer influencers through an interactive event created by the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) this Thursday, Sept. 22. The event, called The Food Dialogues, is a town hall-style discussion that will address questions Americans have about how their food is grown and raised and the long-term impact of the food they’re eating on human health and the planet.

The Food Dialogues will take place Thursday in Washington, D.C., New York City and locations in the Midwest and California, as well as online, on Facebook and on the www.fooddialogues.com website beginning at 11:30 a.m. EDT. They will include four panel discussions featuring leaders in food, food service, media and policy, along with farmers of all types and business leaders. These panelists will share different viewpoints about the current and future states of food, and how food is grown and raised.

“Those of us who raise cattle are proud of our ability to care for animals and the fact that we produce wholesome food for consumers,” according to David Dick, a member of the USFRA board representing the NCBA Federation of State Beef Councils. “At the same time, we can learn a lot by listening to those who eat our product and answer questions they may have about the products and animals for which we’re responsible.”

The event will begin in Washington, with the final panel taking place in California. The entire event will stream live online from 11:30 a.m. EDT through 5 p.m. EDT, providing everyone an opportunity to register to watch and participate in the discussion online.

Among the participants will be Claire Shipment, a television journalist and senior national correspondent for ABC’s “Good Morning America,” who will host the event from Washington, D.C., and Chef John Besh, who will host in New York. Also participating will be Max Armstrong of Farm Progress Companies and Jane Wells of CNBC.

“Our industry is certainly a diverse one, and consumers have a right to know just what goes into producing the beef they eat, and how it affects their health and environment,” said Dick, a beef producer from Sedalia, Mo. “Whether they’re large or small, producing natural and organic or conventionally raised beef, producers welcome the chance to directly discuss with consumers their operations, their products and the efforts they’re making to put food on this country’s tables.”

USFRA was established in 2010 and is headquartered in Chesterfield, Mo. It represents more than 50 of the top farmer- and rancher-led organizations, which includes prominent agricultural groups at the national, regional and state levels that have collaborated to lead a dialogue about the commitment to continuous improvement and best production practices. The beef industry is helping fund the event and other USFRA efforts through the Beef Checkoff Program, the Federation of State Beef Council’s and NCBA’s policy division. For more information on the Alliance, visit www.fooddialogues.com.