Mohammad Modarres gave a keynote where he discussed the importance of consumers shopping at a local farmers' market. Modarres is the founder of Abe's Eats which created meat products catering to the needs of multiple religious groups. He was also a co-founder of a biotechnology company and a political cartoonist.
Mohammad Modarres opens his keynote by stating that large agriculture companies own the majority of the food supply chain. Modarres continues to state that he has observed farmers not being able to purchase the foods that they create. He attributes this to consolidation in the food processing industry, and the rising instances of bankruptcy for small farmers. Modarres states that if this continues, then it could result in economic struggles similar to the farm crises seen through the 1980s.
Mohammad Modarres goes on to outline the various benefits of consumers shopping at a local farmers' market. Modarres notes that at a farmers' market, farmers keep a much higher percentage of the profits. Additionally, farmers' markets source food locally which is better for the environment. Mohammad Modarres closes his keynote by highlighting the existence of databases to help consumers find farmers' markets, and by once again urging people to support farmers' markets.