The Texas/Mexico Border Coalition (TMBC) in cooperation with several USDA Agencies is sponsoring the First National Hispanic Farmer and Rancher Conference in San Antonio on February 22-25, 2004 at the historic St. Anthony Hotel on the renowned Riverwalk.

“TMBC is a community based organization established in 1999 to maintain the health, social, environmental and economic integrity of rural communities along the Texas and New Mexico borders with Mexico,” said Omar Garza, Chairman of the Coalition.

The “Risk Management through Environmental Stewardship” conference will begin at 5:30 p.m. on February 22nd with a networking reception. During the four-day event, representatives of Federal and State agencies, industry and academia will present information regarding state and federal farm programs, water issues, food safety, small farm initiatives and financial risk management.

“TMBC has hosted two statewide conferences in Texas. Due to the success of these events, the TMBC directors decided to go national this year - bringing more people together, broadening our scope and increasing the exchange of ideas through networking and partnership development,” said Garza.

Registration for the conference is $200.00. For an additional $25.00 each, conference participants can enjoy a pre-conference tour of historic Missions in the San Antonio area and/or a post-conference tour of an Exotic Game and Wildlife Ranch near Hondo, Texas.

“We [TMBC] are excited about the conference and hope that the event will lay a foundation on which to build an annual enjoyable, educational and mutually beneficial event for Hispanic farmers and ranchers, their families and members of the agriculture industry,” said Garza.

For conference agenda and registration information, contact Omar Garza at (956) 488-0534 or visit the Texas/Mexico Border Coalition online at http://www.tm-bc.org.