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Farm & Rural Ag Network

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Now displaying: Category: Agriculture Business
Jul 19, 2017

Today’s guests allow us to look at agricultural technology and entrepreneurship from two different perspectives. Kyle Heikes is part of the IN10T, a digital agricultural company that created Farmer Trials. Farmer Trials is a platform that connects people who have new ideas and want to test them on real farms. These people get to work with real farmers who have the skill and resources to assess whether these ideas solve real problems that farmers face.

Also with me is Kyle Morrow, a farmer in Indiana who is currently a customer of Farmer Trials. Kyle shares his experience working with the company and allows us to look at matters from a practical approach since one of the goals of the program is to see things from different lenses.

Today, we see that all new and innovative agricultural technology is nothing until tested and proven effective on the farm. Kyle shares how art and science are combined as a growth strategy used by Farmer Trials; the communication process among the farmer, the ag entrepreneur, and Farmer Trials; and when entrepreneurs can approach Farmers Trials if they have new insights and project proposals.

 

“Having something like Farmer Trials where they can try multiple things within a given year accelerate the learning curve to utilizing the data.” - Kyle Morrow

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Problems that existed on the farm before Farmer Trials came along
  • Requirements farmers had to meet in the past if a company wanted to do farm trials
  • Tasks that Farmer Trials manage and facilitate for agribusinesses
  • Working in the business versus working on the business
  • Why the services offered by Farmer Trials are appealing to companies both big and small
  • How Farmer Trials plan to use the grant awarded tthem by Kansas Department of Agriculture
  • Who determines the compensation for the projects

 

Check Out Kevin Heikes Across the Net:

 

Check Out Kyle Morrow Across the Net:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website

AgGrad on Twitter

AgGrad on Facebook

AgGrad on LinkedIn

AgGrad on Instagram

Jul 12, 2017

While having guests and learning from people with different perspectives are the typical setup of this show, stopping to reflect on the things that have been discussed and talked about is an excellent way of seeing the learning, growth, and future direction of the program. With this said, today, I’m going to deviate from my normal program flow to look back and see where the journey has taken us.

Today, I’m going to talk about the five big takeaways I have learned from the first 60 episodes of the Future of Agriculture podcast. I also explain how these five big things determine the direction and content of the program.

 

Agriculture should be looked at from as many different lenses as possible. That’s where we’re going to get the ideas.

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Agricultural technology and agricultural entrepreneurship
  • What agricultural education is about and why it is important
  • Defining cooperative extensions and how this reinforces agricultural education
  • Solving serious problems like environmental impact, sustainability, social issues, hunger, and food waste
  • The generational aspect to each agriculture story
  • Agriculture and empathy
  • How we can practice empathy together in the next 60 episodes of the program

 

 

Mentioned in This Episode:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website

AgGrad on Twitter

AgGrad on Facebook

AgGrad on LinkedIn

AgGrad on Instagram

 

 

Jul 5, 2017

Peter Schott grew up in a family with technologically inclined parents who used computers on their farm even from way back in 1984. Because of this, Peter's curiosity on the possibilities that technology can bring in solving agricultural problems grew. As a result, Peter and another guy from his college dorm decided to work together on offering solutions through mobile apps by establishing their own company called Myriad Mobile.

Today, Peter talks about the significant role that mobile apps play in the future of agriculture and the solution of current agricultural problems. He shares some excellent insights from two different perspectives - one from that of a farmer’s and the other of an entrepreneur. He also explains the significance of knowing your audience, your vision, and the problem you want to solve when thinking of a good app to pursue.

 

“I think the industry is best served if people spend more time listening to their customers and working alongside them rather than telling them what they need.”  – Peter Schott

 

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • How Peter’s family used computers on the farm in 1984
  • Biggest game-changer for technology on his farm from 1984 to the present
  • How Myriad Mobile came to be and the core of Myriad’s business
  • The platform he created as a result of a cooperative request
  • Challenges of having and creating a mobile team and where he found his success in sales
  • Similarities and differences between developing apps for agriculture and other fields
  • How farmers can differentiate good technology versus salesmanship
  • How powerful Twitter is in connecting with others in the same industry
  • A peak on the process entrepreneurs go through when engaging with a mobile app firm
  • The biggest unsolved problems in agriculture that can be solved by technology

 

 

Check Out Peter Schott Across the Net:

 

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website

AgGrad on Twitter

AgGrad on Facebook

AgGrad on LinkedIn

AgGrad on Instagram

 

 

Jun 28, 2017

Today’s episode is a continuation of a two-part series on why you should teach agriculture. In the previous episode, Dr. Daniel Foster, an educator at Pennsylvania State University, shared his insights about agriculture and agricultural education on a national scale. Dr. Foster not only makes a difference in the lives of young people, but also trains teachers who want to make a difference in the agricultural education outside the country.

Dr. Foster joins me today as he talks about agriculture and agricultural education on an international scale. He shares how he tried to help establish agricultural education in Guatemala and the inspiring story when Dr. Foster and his team of agricultural instructors had an intercultural agriculture trip to Korea.

 

“It’s okay to be scared but saddle up anyway because there’s a young person in this world, there’s a young person in America that needs you.”  – Dr. Daniel Foster

 

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Possible reasons why there is a decrease in agriculture instructors in the U.S.
  • How agricultural businesses can offer assistance and support on ag programs
  • Why there are high rates of out-of-school and disengaged students aged 16 to 24 in Guatemala
  • Foster’s proposal regarding the development of Guatemala’s agricultural education
  • Why each agricultural teacher is required to do an individualized professional development plan
  • How Dr. Foster expands the global mindset of students
  • Other significant student learnings Dr. Foster hopes his students will discover
  • Challenges prospective agriculture educators face and how Dr. Foster can help instructors

 

Questions Ag Businesses Should Ask Ag Programs:

  1. Where are the ag programs around me?
  2. What do you have going on?
  3. Where do you need assistance and help?
  4. How can we help?

 

Check Out Dr. Daniel Foster Across the Net:

 

 

Join our National Teach Agriculture Campaign!

 

As a primary supporter of the agricultural network, BASF proudly sponsors the National Teach Agriculture Campaign, a movement with a mission to raise awareness about the need to recruit and retain qualified and diverse agricultural teachers.

If you are interested in making a lasting impact in developing the future leaders of agriculture, visit NAAE.org for more details.

 

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website

AgGrad on Twitter

AgGrad on Facebook

AgGrad on LinkedIn

AgGrad on Instagram

 

 

Jun 21, 2017

Daniel Foster is a proponent of agricultural literacy and is currently an Agricultural Teacher Educator at The Pennsylvania State University. He credits his mother for his love for the industry which all started when his mom decided to move out of Texas to Arizona to further her career in agriculture. He was just 15 going 16 at the time and was a starter on his school’s football team, so he considers this part of his life as a fun transition.

 

In Arizona, he decided to pursue a degree in agriculture and continue his studies until he eventually got his doctorate at Ohio State. To this day, he recalls never really wanting to teach agriculture. That is until February of his senior year as a student teacher. It was then he realized he wanted to keep doing this, teaching young minds about the importance and future of agriculture, for the rest of his life.

 

On today’s episode, Daniel talks about how his mom inspired him to pursue agricultural studies, why he decided to become a student teacher, the importance of Ag literacy, and his thoughts on Ag Educators. 

 
“It's a lot more fun helping a kid discover what they have inside through agriculture than it is trying to twist the arm of an elected official to recognize the importance of our industry.”  – Dr. Daniel Foster 

 

 
This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast: 

  • What contributes to the Ag teacher shortage?
  • Do rural areas need better Ag programs?
  • What does Ag literacy success look like?
  • Why should Ag literacy be relevant to everybody?
  • How Ag literacy can cause you to make better lifestyle choices.
  • Why the engine of Ag education is the educator.
  • Core pain points causing attrition in the ranks of Ag teachers.
  • The importance of facilitating and utilizing support programs in Ag education.
  • His goal of funding a female agricultural production operation in every continent.

 

 

Check Out Daniel Foster Across the Net: 

 

 

We Are a Part of a Bigger Family! 

The Future of Agriculture Podcast is now part of the Farm and Rural Ag Network. Listen to more ag-related podcasts by subscribing on iTunes or on the Farm and Rural Ag Network Website today. 

 
 

Share the Ag-Love! 

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots! 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:  

AgGrad Website 
AgGrad on Twitter 
AgGrad on Facebook 
AgGrad on LinkedIn 
AgGrad on Instagram 

 

Jun 14, 2017

Today’s guest grew up in Mariposa, California and has viewed the world from different lenses as a youth through the 4-H Youth Program. Marcus Hollan attributes his distinctiveness and success to his involvement in such programs when he was younger which allowed him to embrace the diversity of others and understand the importance of inclusion in a community. Marcus is one of the founders of the Cultivating Change Foundation, an organization that elevates and values the LGBTQ community within the agriculture industry.

In today’s episode, Marcus talks about the roles that diversity, inclusion, equality, and equity play in the workplace - especially in agriculture. As the chief learning officer of Studio 5, Marcus also shares the organization’s goals, the business case for promoting agriculture, and how the corporate equality index has become a significant tool to know more about how open a company is to embracing racial, cultural, religious, and gender orientation differences.

 

“There is also power in recognizing our differences; in celebrating and honoring who we are.”  – Marcus Hollan

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Defining diversity, inclusion, equality, and equity
  • What people want - equality versus equity
  • Why you should ask purposeful and intentional questions
  • What inspired Marcus to launch Cultivating Change Foundation
  • The goals of the foundation
  • Challenges Marcus faced in starting Cultivating Change
  • Defining the corporate equality index and its function

 

Join us at the 2017 Cultivating Change Summit!

On June 21 to 23, the third annual Cultivating Change Summit will take place in Sacramento, California. Learn from the excellent speakers, fantastic workshop presenters, and the 8-people panel that will tackle the future of agriculture through the lens of diversity and inclusion as they come up with plans of actions as to how we can better serve the agriculture industry.

Be a part of history-in-the-making by checking out Cultivating Change Website today!

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website

AgGrad on Twitter

AgGrad on Facebook

AgGrad on LinkedIn

AgGrad on Instagram

 

Jun 7, 2017

Coley Jones Drinkwater belongs to a third-generation family of farmers who tend to and sustain the Richlands Dairy Farm in Blackstone, Virginia. Richlands Farm has been a dairy farm since the 1950s. Coley’s story makes you see life in agriculture from different perspectives - a multigenerational angle, a sustainability angle, and an entrepreneurship angle.

On today’s episode, Coley talks about the inspiring story of how her grandparents started and pursued the farm as they relied on agriculture in raising and sending their five children to college. She also explains how she and her family decided not to sell the farm during one of its trying times with the challenges, pressures, and sacrifices she and her family made to keep the farm and pursue their own creamery in spite of the denial of her initial proposal.


“I hope in building the creamery that maybe that is something that I can do for someone else’s family as well where you can just come, get some ice cream. Sit on the porch. Just breathe and take a moment to be together as a family because that to me is really what makes farming worth all the sacrifice.”  – Coley Jones Drinkwater

 


This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The crops that Coley and her family grow on the farm
  • What to expect during the farm’s Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze Fall Festivals
  • The farm’s first ever “Dinner on the Dairy” that’s happening on June 23
  • Why the first ice cream flavor gives honor to Coley’s grandmother
  • Coley’s frustration about misleading labels and marketing strategies concerning truth and honesty
  • The hardest part in farming for Coley since she came back to the farm full-time
  • What gives Coley hope and purpose in life

 

Check Out Coley Jones Drinkwater Across the Net:

 

We Are a Part of a Bigger Family!

The Future of Agriculture Podcast is now part of the Farm and Rural Ag Network. Listen to more ag-related podcasts by subscribing on iTunes or on the Farm and Rural Ag Network Website today.

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website
AgGrad on Twitter
AgGrad on Facebook
AgGrad on LinkedIn
AgGrad on Instagram

May 31, 2017

Today’s guest is an independent movie producer from New York City. Sam Goldberg grew up in Manhattan without any background in agriculture. He was introduced to agriculture when a filmmaker approached him for a concept about grain entrapment, a real and grave danger that farmers and other members of the community are exposed to. Seeing the significance of the issue socially, Sam currently is raising funds for the operation and completion of the movie titled Silo The Film.

On today’s episode, Sam talks about the progress he and his team have made in the production of Silo. He also shares why he thinks this movie is socially relevant and his stand on why he wanted to pursue this film in spite of the timespan they need to devote to complete it. He also mentions some of the things that Sam and his team are currently working on like fund-raising, casting, and searching for the right location to shoot the movie.

 

“This, to me, represents a potential bridge for conversation where a segment of the population can be humanized in such a way that is relatable to anybody.”  – Sam Goldberg

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Overview and plot of Silo The Film
  • What compelled Sam and his business partners to pursue this project
  • The social significance of this film
  • Reasons for filming a documentary
  • Response of the people who viewed the short film at the Tribeca Film Festival
  • The overall cost of the project and how the cost is divided
  • How the revenue side of film works
  • How Sam found the grain entrapment expert his team is working with on the film

 

Check Out Sam Goldberg Across the Net:

 

 

We Are a Part of a Bigger Family!

 

The Future of Agriculture Podcast is a part of a network called Farm and Rural Ag Network. Listen to more ag-related podcasts by subscribing on iTunes or on the Farm and Rural Ag Network Website today.

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website
AgGrad on Twitter
AgGrad on Facebook
AgGrad on LinkedIn
AgGrad on Instagram

 

May 24, 2017

Joining us on today’s episode of Future of Agriculture Podcast are two educators who are making an impact in the agricultural industry by engaging the youth and influencing the future workforce of agriculture. Our first guest, Seth Heinert, is an Agricultural High School teacher in Ogallala, Nebraska who started a rural program two years ago. Beverly Flatt is a program manager who works with city schools called Academies of Nashville in Tennessee helps students discover the passion they would like to pursue after high school.

Seth and Beverly share two different programs and approaches as they cater to students from diverse backgrounds and regions. Seth shares some fascinating stories about his classroom experiences in western Nebraska and the reasons why he’s so passionate about pursuing rural education and instilling in his students a love for agriculture. Beverly identifies the agriculture programs they offer in urban education. She also mentions that for the urban students, their exposure to the amount of technology used in the agricultural sector play a significant role in generating interest in the students.

 

“I think agricultural education plays a huge role in getting kids engaged in their rural communities.”  – Seth Heinert

“Just giving students an experience and an opportunity to get involved in agriculture is often the only thing we need to do to sell them on making this an industry and a passion for life.” – Beverly Flatt

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Seth’s priorities in the program he started
  • The essence of having an advisory council and the responsibilities they carry out
  • The three components of Seth’s rural program
  • The primary classifications of the courses Seth teaches
  • What led Beverly to agriculture literacy
  • What the program Academies of Nashville is all about and the school levels and age group they cater to
  • The four agricultural programs in the urban program
  • Acquiring accurate information and getting rid of fake news is the biggest challenge on ag literacy
  • How Beverly and her team determine the courses to be offered in their program
  • How agriculture can improve the academic performance of students

 

 

We are a Part of a Bigger Family!

 

The Future of Agriculture Podcast is a part of a network called Farm and Rural Ag Network. Listen to more ag-related podcasts by subscribing on iTunes or on the Farm and Rural Ag Network Website today.

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website  
AgGrad on Twitter  
AgGrad on Facebook  
AgGrad on LinkedIn  
AgGrad on Instagram

May 17, 2017

Millennials are making waves in many of today’s business and career industries – and the agriculture industry is no exception. This week, I’m speaking with Mikayla Sullivan, co-founder and “Ringleader of Regal Operations” at Kinosol. Her team of millennials – many of which are fresh out of college – are on a mission to solve one of the world’s biggest problems – world hunger – through agriculture technology.

Kinosol uses dehydration techniques that can be used anywhere in the world – due to its solar-power technology – to make food products last longer, to effectively reduce food waste around the world. Currently, Mikayla and her team are focusing on helping people in developing countries reduce food waste and improve their food storage ability in an effort to help end world hunger on a global scale.

Today, she shares the Kinosol mission and how the business idea got started, the interesting way the team generated the initial business capital to continue to grow and scale, and some of the food safety concerns surrounding dehydration – particularly with meat.

 

“People don’t care what it looks like. It really just matters if it works and if it’s going to improve what they are already doing and save them time down the road.” – Mikayla Sullivan

 

This Week on the Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Kinosol’s mission to reduce food waste on a global scale – particularly in developing countries
  • How the company is working to not only reduce food waste and combat world hunger, but also provide income-generating opportunities in developing countries
  • What is a Specific Benefit Corporation and how it differs from a non-profit organization and an LLC
  • How farmers in developing countries can receive Kinosol’s products
  • What the Kinosol solar-power dehydrator is capable of
  • Food safety concerns regarding meat and ensuring consumer safety
  • Unit cost and distribution model
  • The Kinosol “Sponsor-A-Unit” program
  • How the business idea got started
  • How they raised their initial business capital
  • How the founding members decided which countries to target first
  • Their biggest challenges throughout their entrepreneurial journey
  • Why Mikayla believes her team’s naivety about the process of developing the product worked to their advantage
  • New product development plans within the next two years

 

 

Check Out Kinosol & Mikayla Sullivan Across the Net:

 

 

Share the Ag-Love! 

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots! 

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting: 

AgGrad Website  
AgGrad on Twitter  
AgGrad on Facebook  
AgGrad on LinkedIn  
AgGrad on Instagram 

 

May 10, 2017

Today’s guest, Hope Floeck of Hope Floeck Consulting, grew up on a farm in East Texas. She went to Texas Tech University where she received her undergraduate degree in agricultural economics and her graduate degree in agriculture. For 20 years, she worked with a food processing organization where she handled food assistance and food policy, both here and abroad. Not so long ago, Hope decided to establish her consulting company with the goal of helping individuals and organizations understand the programming of agriculture and how they can get involved.

On today’s episode, Hope talks about how people found out about her newly established business. She points out the importance of developing long-term relationships in the past that helped disseminate the news of her new venture by word of mouth. Hope also elaborates on the things people can do to take a more active role in agriculture and discusses the reasons why people in agricultural businesses are willing to fund agricultural education.

 

“From the years of my research days, from being involved in food processing and international food aid policy, which also branch over into ag policy, I feel that I could really bring some value to helping some folks.” – Hope Floeck

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The story that prompted Hope to post big agricultural questions on Twitter
  • Type of responses Hope got from the Twitter thread she started
  • The varied responses of people from the different walks of life with the same point that there should be more funding for agricultural education
  • One of the compelling answers that had Hope thinking where she eventually ended up with more questions in mind

Check Out Hope Floeck Across the Net:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website
AgGrad on Twitter
AgGrad on Facebook
AgGrad on LinkedIn
AgGrad on Instagram

May 3, 2017

Today’s guest is from the Bronx in New York. His journey to agriculture started accidentally while he was dealing with student conflict in his class. From zero agricultural background, Stephen Ritz created a system – a whole school program that changed how the students, the parents, and the community view agriculture. This program, called Green Bronx Machine, is more than about educating his students about farming. Stephen sees it as a way to solve real problems in the community like lack of student engagement in school, poor education, and poor health including unequal opportunities for the disadvantaged.

On today’s episode, Stephen talks about the effects and benefits of Green Bronx Machine to the students and the community as a whole. He shares how he integrates growing food with academics. Stephen also elaborates on one of the goals of the program’s model, which is not about a “me” mentality, but a “we” mentality. This outlook is about people everywhere working together in achieving the goal of making wise choices, living healthy, and personal and community development. He is encouraged to see the outcome as his students are empowered to make healthy choices as a result of instilling child wellness and mindfulness in them.

 

“When we teach our children about nature, we teach them to nurture. And when we teach children to nurture, we as a society collectively embrace our better nature. And that’s what this work is about.” – Stephen Ritz

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The 9-1-1 situation in Stephen’s class that lead to a 3-1-1 moment
  • One of the significant effects of the Green Bronx Machine Project: Students you don’t expect to go through college ending up as college graduates
  • Evolution of the program, how it has evolved today, and some of the programs offered such as after-school programming, weekend programming, and summer camps
  • Age window of students allowed in the program
  • How the collateral learning influence the behavior of the students
  • How the program can change the community’s outlook on food as medicine in relation to diabetes and obesity
  • The process that Stephen adapts especially for first-time student-growers: If they grow it, they eat it
  • The focus of the model of the program – quality of teaching and quality of learning
  • Metrics Stephen uses in the program concerning academics (attendance, performance, etc.)
  • What makes the Green Bronx Machine a whole-school solution and not just any other kind of school economics program
  • Content of Stephen’s book – his story, his children’s story, the community’s story, and tools that equip people to grow something great and impact their community

Check Out Stephen Ritz Across the Net:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website
AgGrad on Twitter
AgGrad on Facebook
AgGrad on LinkedIn
AgGrad on Instagram

 

Apr 26, 2017

Today’s guest is my close friend, James Garner. He is a partner in a company called Cogent Communications that does public affairs work in agriculture and agricultural businesses in Sacramento, California. For ten years, he has been a part of a band called Johnny Cash Tribute Band, where he is the group’s manager and front man. On top of these varied roles, James has also been doing drag racing with his dad. James’ father has been a part of a drag racing team as a racer for years.

On today’s episode, James talks about the significant changes that occurred in his life when he started Cogent Communications with his colleague, together with the ideal clients they work with. He also points out the strong suits that have kept them on top of their game, which are understanding the issues on the farm and coherently communicating these matters to the board (local, supervisory, or regulatory). James also elaborates on what currently seems to be a mild concern, but can be a hot one in the future because of its impact at the farming level – the Food Safety Modernization Act.

 

“We try to be cogent in all our communications – clear, logical, convincing.” – James Garner

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • How technology helps shape the communications and data collection in James’ work
  • High-level issues affecting the clients and what James and his team do: water, water quality, and sustainability
  • James’ magic formula for building healthy business relationships
  • More tips on establishing good business and personal relationships
  • An on-going concern that the consumers keep asking for but valued much and lived out by farmers

Check Out James Garner Across the Net:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website   
AgGrad on Twitter   
AgGrad on Facebook     
AgGrad on LinkedIn   
AgGrad on Instagram  

 

Apr 19, 2017

Building A Brand From Scratch in Agriculture with Marji Guyler-Alaniz of Farmher

Women have been part of agriculture since the beginning of time. Today’s guest is passionate about showing how the roles of women have progressed and increased in this field. Born and raised in Iowa, Marji Guyler-Alaniz studied Graphic Journalism and Photography in college. Recently, she had a lot of surprises and transitions in her life in a span of only four years – from insurance to photography to owning a company and being a TV hostess. Today, Marji is the president of Farmher, a company that came about as a result of her passion in shining the light on women in agriculture.

On today’s episode, Marji recounts the Super Bowl advertisement that inspired her to start capturing images of women in agriculture. She shares the exciting story of how she built her brand from scratch and how Farmher has progressed from a hobby to a brand with a regular TV show. She also narrates the quick progression of her journey with Farmher, talks about her mission and vision, and points out her considerations when making decisions.

 

“I started it with a premise of shine me a light on the role that women play in agriculture through photographs and help to update the image of agriculture with those photographs.” – Marji Guyler-Alaniz

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Marji’s mission and the tale of the first woman Marji photographed in 2013
  • Effects of the connection between Farmher website creation and the publication Modern Farmer
  • Merchandise creation and the factor that made women identify to her brand
  • Producing FarmHer TV Show and Marji’s reasons for pursuing it
  • Company challenges and breakthroughs
  • Marji’s biggest surprise since starting the business

 

Check out Marji Guyler-Alaniz Across the Net:

 

Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

Learn more about AgGrad by visiting:

AgGrad Website  

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Apr 12, 2017

If you are a typical American who enjoys bacon and eggs for breakfast, can you imagine a future without them? If you are a doctor, a dietician or someone in the health and wellness industry, would you consider a diet without meat – chicken, pork or beef – a healthy and balanced one? Today’s guest is the vice president of communications for a non-profit organization called Animal Agriculture Alliance that is based in Washington DC. Hannah Thompson-Weeman is an advocate and defender of the animal agriculture industry as she continues to work with farmers, restaurants, and other influencers in educating people about how their food is produced, grown and prepared.

On today’s episode, Hannah talks about the future of the animal agriculture industry and the challenges it currently faces, one of which is the damage that activists groups are trying to make in the industry. She talks about the effects of these threats to the farmers, the government, and the middle segment, with the latter composed of groups of consumers who do not know much about how their food is produced such as restaurants and legislators. Hannah also gives a glimpse of the collegiate competition the Alliance holds to encourage and empower students in their agricultural journey.

 

“Don’t let anyone make you scared of your food or make you guilty about your food. You should be empowered to make your own dining decisions but make them based on facts and not on fear and misinformation.” – Hannah Thompson-Weeman

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Philosophical argument of “activist groups” or the people who do not approve of the existence of the animal agriculture industry
  • Ways extremists find funding and the tools they use to get it
  • What donors don’t know about commercials involving dogs and cats
  • One call to action that people in the animal agriculture would have for consumers
  • Impact of the fear instilled by activist groups on the credibility of the government and large organizations
  • Reasons why people in the animal agriculture industry do not engage with the activists
  • Philosophy of Animal Agriculture Alliance
  • Biggest misconception about animal agriculture in the middle group
  • Why college students are the largest target of activist groups
  • Details of the college agricultural competition the Alliance holds, its aim, and the prizes that await the top three winners

 

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Apr 5, 2017

Today’s guest grew up in Grass Valley, California. Sara Hollenbeck lives with her husband on a ranch in Molt, Montana called the Hollenbeck Ranch. Together with her husband and in-laws, Sara manages a sheep operation in Molt on top of many other diverse things they do on the farm.

On today’s episode, Sara talks about an unfamiliar topic to many – sheep operation. She discusses the necessary tasks and human resources it takes to keep the operation running smoothly. She also shares who Totes MaGoats is, how her lamb company was born, and how she was able to open the community to eating lamb.

 

“The people I’m focused on are the ones that are interested, or curious even, about where their food is coming from or how their food is being raised.” – Sara Hollenbeck

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Brief background about the sheepherders and reasons why their presence and the H-2A program play a vital role in the sheep operation
  • Where the sheep ranch gets the majority of its revenue
  • The importance of breeding on the quality of the meat and wool and reasons why it is important to focus on the latter
  • Sheep shearing and why it is considered the “fun time” in the ranch
  • Sara's goals for the future of the ranch

Check Out Sara Hollenbeck Across the Net:

 

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Mar 22, 2017

To better understand what’s going on in the agriculture business, looking outside the boundaries is a must. Knowing how other countries do things help the agriculture industry see the bigger picture and understand how things work together in a global viewpoint.

Today’s guest, Wendell Schumm, had never thought about considering other things than milking cows. He grew up on a dairy farm and has developed a passion for it. With his dad’s support and encouragement, Wendell got a two-year business diploma at Ontario Business College. At age 21, he worked for a local coop for two years before landing another job with a feed company that is a Purina dealer. Keeping his enthusiasm for dairy by working as a dairy nutritionist, Wendell became a partner to a new nutrition company at age 26. In 2009, a privately owned feed manufacturer, Wallenstein Feed, bought this nutrition company. Wendell has been working for them ever since.

On today’s episode, Wendell shares the uniqueness of the Canadian agriculture and the impact that feed manufacturing is making globally. He talks about the reasons why contracting out a company who specializes in the mixture of the feeds is more advantageous over DIY mixed feeds. He also shares what he sees in the future of the agricultural network, the direction of the feed business, and the reasons why he started his agricultural podcast.

 

“A lot of what we want to focus on would be whatever we can do to make consumers feel good about how we’re raising their food.” – Wendell Schumm

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The difference between Ontario and Western Canada and its proximity to the US market.
  • The benefits of having a middleman between the buyer and manufacturer.
  • The changes in the feed manufacturing and the advantages of using new technology.
  • The foundations of their system and how it ensures farmers have a predictable and sustainable income for the work they do.

Check Out Wendell Schumm Across the Net:

 

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Mar 15, 2017

On today’s episode of Future of Agriculture Podcast, my guest is an engineer by who was born in Nebraska and grew up as a city kid in Omaha. Russ Conser eventually fell in-love with energy which started his decades-long career in Shell Oil where he learned more about oil, gas, and carbon. You may be surprised to hear that the knowledge and experience Russ gained in this industry eventually led him to his present venture in the field of agriculture.

Russ Conser is the CEO of Standard Soil, a company that uses adaptive multi-paddock grazing to grow grass-fed beef at scale. He spent the last 15 years in innovation and investing in pioneering startups that produce revolutionary and edgy outputs and results. A writer, speaker, investor, and game-changer, Russ talks about Standard Soil’s business model, its difference from other tech startups, the positive environmental impact it brings, and a lot more.

 

“I tend to think of agriculture really as the biological solar energy business in the world of farmers and ranchers.” – Russ Conser

 

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Russ elaborates the difference between traditional grazing and multi-paddock grazing.
  • He shares the effects of multi-paddock grazing that are advantageous not only to the business itself, but also in the quality of the nutrient produced in the soil.
  • Together with the overall environmental impact of multi-paddock grazing, Russ talks about what the organic-rich soils can do for everyone.
  • He gives some tips on how they handle moving paddocks frequently, how they manage the grazing during wintertime, and how to know the right square footage of paddocks per cow.
  • Russ emphasizes that the methods by which these things are produced usually cause concern with broader environmental issues.
  • He introduces the “cocktail mix” producers use to create a superior product.
  • Forward-looking, Russ talks about the significance of multi-paddock grazing to the US beef industry 20 years from now.

 

Additional Resources Mentioned in Today’s Episode

 

Check Out Russ Conser Across the Net:

 

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Mar 8, 2017

Today’s guest, Joel Cowley, grew up with his grandparents who exposed him to agriculture even before being introduced to books at school. Losing his parents at an early age, he knows the importance and value of agriculture programs since one of these supported parts of his college education through scholarship.  

The confidence that was built from being exposed to agriculture at a young age allowed him to acquire a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Colorado State University, a master’s degree in animal science from Texas University, and another master’s degree in business administration from Michigan State University.  His passion for agriculture and knowledge in management led him to be the president and CEO of Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo for the last three and a half years.

On today’s episode, Joel gives us a glimpse of the 23-day festival happening in Texas called the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. With the mission to promote agriculture, Joel and his team prepare an annual experience that’s worth looking forward to as he talks about what to expect – livestock show, horse show, fascinating exhibits, fun carnival, shopping, creative food, and great entertainment. They hope that the spectators will have more appreciation for agriculture once they have experienced this much-anticipated affair.

“Agriculture is going to need to become more efficient, and it’s going to take technology to meet the future demands.” – Joel Cowley

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Joel shares how the livestock show started and the importance of Livestock Show and Rodeo in the cattle industry.
  • He elaborates on the ways they try to accomplish the mission of Houston Livestock and Rodeo.
  • Joel discusses how he and his team present different exhibits in interactive and engaging ways to address possible questions and concerns about agriculture during the show with attendees of 2.5 million
  • He also talks about the program of the festival, what the audience can expect to see and experience, and the demographics of the spectators.
  • He shares the number of workers, both full-time and volunteers, who help put the show together.
  • Joel elaborates why Houston was coined by watchdog groups as “The Most Philanthropic City in America,” and how he and his team have diversified the festival’s entertainment since Houston has been proclaimed “The Most Ethnic and Culturally Diverse City in America.”
  • He cites the allocations of the funding raised during the festival.

Check Out Joel Cowley Across the Net:

 

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Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

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Mar 1, 2017

AgTech has experienced quite a boom over the years. There is no question that innovation can boost tremendous improvements in the Agriculture industry. And like me, many Agriculture professionals and business owners are curious and eagerly awaiting the next big thing from AgTech.

Louisa Burwood-Taylor is currently at the heart of the AgTech industry as the Chief Editor of AgFunderNews.com. She was originally a financial journalist and was privileged to shift to AgTech just when the industry started gaining significant progress.

In today’s show, Louisa shares her experience in AgTech, along with invaluable entrepreneurial advice, insight and a glimpse of what is to come in the industry.

“Agriculture is the least digitized industry in the world, which is pretty concerning because it is one of the most essential industries in our daily lives.”

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The Agriculture industry is currently experiencing an Intersection between food, technology, and entrepreneurship.
  • Women are making great strides in the Agriculture industry and it makes sense to have more of their voice in the corporate scene, because they influence more than half of the food choices in the family).
  • Consumer demand and changes are really going to impact how farmers plant, what they plant, and how they grow it.
  • There's a huge potential for robotics to revolutionize farming, but it has not yet raised much funding because the technology is not quite there yet and it can be quite expensive.
  • Louisa shares the “hot” areas for AgTech where there are a lot of start-ups and tech innovation hubs.
  • She discusses what accelerators do and their role in AgTech.
  • Entrepreneurs are demonstrating more enthusiasm with AgTech this year.
  • It may take some time before AgTech finds another unicorn, because the investors have pulled back over the last few years.

Resources Mentioned

Reach out with Damian Mason:

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Share the Ag-Love!

Thanks for joining us on the Future of Agriculture Podcast – your spot for valuable information, content, and interviews with industry leaders throughout the agricultural space! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, please subscribe on iTunes and leave your honest feedback. Don’t forget to share it with your friends on your favorite social media spots!

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