Urban lawmakers from across the United States will gather in Des Moines beginning today to learn about agricultural issues during a conference convened by state Rep. Helen Miller, D-Fort Dodge.
The National Urban Ag Academy will continue through Saturday.
More than 30 legislators from 11 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands are expected to attend.
U.S. Rep. Leonard Boswell, D-Iowa; Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey; Kenneth Quinn, president of the World Food Prize Foundation; and educators from Iowa State University in Ames will address the lawmakers.
''Informing and encouraging diverse new voices for agricultural and rural issues will enable all legislators to become fully informed and better able to help grow the agricultural economy,'' Miller wrote in statement announcing the conference.
Miller is the top Democrat on the Iowa House Agriculture Committee.