What is the Global Farmer Roundtable?

How do you feed a growing world population that is expected to increase by 2.6 billion people by 2050? And you must accomplish this by using resources like water and fertilizer more efficiently while protecting the environment. The world’s farmers are central to meeting these growing food and nutritional needs in a sustainable manner. It’s a daunting challenge but not out of reach.

Global food demand will require that farmers everywhere have access to the technologies, tools and strategies they need to maximize their productivity and fill the food gap of a growing population. Farmers –engaged as full partners with all stakeholders – can innovate to meet the world’s needs.

The Global Farmer Roundtable, hosted by The Global Farmer Network (GFN), is held each October and is an invitation-only side event at the World Food Prize Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa.  It gathers farmers from around the world to discuss the current issues in food production.   Dr. Norman Borlaug, father of the Green Revolution, challenged the world’s farmers to collaborate – learning from each other by sharing their collective experiences, wisdom and knowledge.  He reminded all of us that the “successful revolutions of the past can be templates for our actions and a resource to maintain our morale.”

In that spirit, the Global Farmer Roundtable features a facilitated dialogue among global farmers to better understand and address the challenges of filling an increasing food and nutritional security gap. Through dialogue and time spent together they discover commonalities, share their challenges, discuss tools, technologies and strategies that can be adopted to meet these challenges, and are empowered to meet the demands of closing the food gap through shared work, message and mission.  The farmers are challenged to discover the power of their unique viewpoint, refine their skills to communicate their story with impact and gain a platform to expand their circle of influence in the global food challenge debate.

Those who have attended can testify to the impact this program can make in a person’s life – it can be life-changing!  Check out this short video of what some of them have to say about the experience.


Members of the Global Farmer Network have been invited to provide keynote messages and speak on panels around the world, author editorials that have been published in major international media markets and invited to join major discussions regarding food and nutritional security at the World Economic Forum, the World Food Prize, the FAO and many other expert groups around the world.

Do you know a farmer who would benefit from this experience, be willing to engage in an important dialogue and add their voice to the Global Farmer Network?

To nominate a farmer or yourself for the 2019 Global Farmer Roundtable please follow the link below.  Nominees must be actively engaged in agricultural production (for example: grains, cereals, fruits, vegetables, fiber, dairy, livestock, poultry, aquatic/fisheries…).  2019 Global Farmer Roundtable nominations will be accepted until Monday, June 3, 2019.  Selected nominees will be contacted during July and August.  Participants should be able to converse in English, and have a valid passport and obtain a travel visa if necessary.  In recent years it has been looked upon favorably for those active on social media.  The ability to communicate readily via email especially is highly recommended.

Click here to nominate someone you know for the 2019 Global Farmer Roundtable.

2019 DATES ARE NOT OFFICIAL – however, for planning purposes the possible or probable dates for the 2019 Global Farmer Roundtable are Monday October 14 – Friday, October 18, 2019 in Des Moines, Iowa.  This is subject to change.

*GFN and the World Food Prize are separate organizations.  Information about the World Food Prize can be found at that organizations’ website – please visit their website to learn more.


Frequently Asked Questions: Here are some general questions and answers to help give an overview of things to think about for potential participants.


Q: What is the Global Farmer Roundtable?
A:  Approximately 15 farmers from various backgrounds and cultures who are invited to gather and discuss agricultural trade and technology access issues, and then continue to be part of a global network of producers.

Q: Who is invited?

A: Those invited have been both small and large scale producers from six continents. Invitees have demonstrated leadership at their local level or beyond, and the desire to expand the Global Farmer Network. English language skills are necessary- spoken and written.

Q: What does it cost to attend?

A: GFN provides the airline ticket, hotel reservation, and registration cost for the World Food Prize – this includes many but not all meals. Those attending are responsible for other meals and personal costs, including charges made to their hotel room. There is no funding for “out of pocket” or personal expenses.

Q: How long does it take?

A: Depending on distance, be prepared to take a week of time to travel to and from Des Moines. Most attendees in the past have arrived in Des Moines on Sunday or Monday and departed on Friday or Saturday, depending on available flights.

Q: What is the weather like and what clothes are needed?

A: Averages 44-64 degrees Fahrenheit (5.5-17.5 Celsius) during October but the weather can vary greatly. Most time is indoors, but a light to medium weight jacket may be helpful while outdoors. Meetings are business casual, the WFP ceremony and dinner is more business formal (suit or jacket for men, nice dress or outfit for women) and it is attended by people from over 50 nations so appropriate cultural clothing is fine.


Please note: It is important that the contact information be complete and accurate for both the nominee and nominator. International correspondence and travel can be difficult, and incomplete or inaccurate information may prevent us from making contact with nominees, or in helping with visa and travel arrangements. Because of time differences, email tends to be the easiest form of contact and is preferred. If you have questions, please write, telephone, fax, or e-mail Global Farmer Network using the contact information below:

Global Farmer Network
Attn: Mary Boote, Executive Director
309 Court Avenue, Suite 214
Des Moines, Iowa USA 50309
Phone: (001) (515)274.0800
Fax: (001) (240)201.8451
Email: mboote@globalfarmernetwork.org