Keith Dittrich, president of the American Corn Growers Association (ACGA) has announced that the organization's 2003 convention will be held in Charleston, S.C., Jan. 30 through Feb. 1, 2003. The convention will be held at the Charleston Riverview Hotel located at 170 Lockwood Drive in Charleston. The theme of this year's convention is "American Corn Growers — Renewing Energy on America's Farms." Dittrich explained, "American corn growers are an essential part of helping this nation through the challenges ahead. We can help insure this country's energy needs through renewable sources such as biofuels like ethanol, biodiesel and ETBE. We can also produce electricity with wind turbines placed on our farms, with home heating through the use of corn burned in state of the art space heaters, and in many other ways. All of these energy sources meet the criteria necessary to assist in expanding the energy alternative for America — namely that they are decentralized, diverse, domestic and renewable." "We also want to renew the energy of our grassroots advocacy to help improve the financial viability of farm families," added Dittrich. "Current projections indicate that 2002 will be the third worst economic year for production agriculture since 1934. We must have better farm policy and we are in dire need of emergency assistance for farm families hard hit by natural disasters during the past two crop years. We need to renew the energy of all of those impacted by these financial and weather related plagues — to make sure they understand that they can make a difference in their future and the future of their children and grandchildren." The 2003 ACGA convention will be the organization's eleventh since its inception in 1987. The American Corn Growers Association is America's leading progressive commodity association, representing the interests of thousands of corn producers in 35 states. From its beginning, the ACGA has worked tirelessly to protect farm income and rural communities. The ACGA recognizes that farmers need to have the opportunity to be rewarded for their time, investment, and risk. For more information about ACGA and upcoming updates on the ACGA Convention, contact Lisa Miles at (202) 835-0330.