Leaders in the agricultural industry, from farmers to biochemists, are gathered in Ames today for “Ag Forum 2001.” Organizers say participants are discussing new trends in consumer demands and what the trends may mean for the future of Midwestern agriculture. Bruce Babcock, director of CARD, the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development, based at Iowa State University. Babcock says some 350 ag professionals in all sorts of fields are at I-S-U for the “Extreme Demands — Extraordinary Products” forum. Babcock says there is more demand for animal “friendly” foods. Babcock says these demands should be a signal for food production companies to move more towards what consumers want. He says those demands are forcing researchers to create new “extraordinary” products for the marketplace through the use of biotechnology.