ZimmCast with @IFAJ Presidents at #ONE17

Chuck Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Past and current Presidents of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists were attending this week’s Alltech Ideas Conference and Cindy’s Golden ZimmComm Microphone got a work out interviewing them for this week’s program.

ZimmCast 544Pictured above are Owen Roberts, current IFAJ President, Mike Wilson, David Markey, Damien O’Reilly (not past President or interviewed) and Markus Rediger. Cindy talks to them about their attendance/coverage of the Alltech event and highlights of their reign. I hope you enjoy it.

Listen to the ZimmCast here: ZimmCast with IFAJ Presidents

2017 Alltech Ideas Conference Photo Album

Subscribe to the ZimmCast podcast here. Use this url in iTunes or your favorite news reader program/app.

The ZimmCast

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Alltech, Audio, Media, ZimmCast

George Blankenship Receives Alltech Medal of Excellence

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Alltech founder Dr. Pearse Lyons presented former Tesla Motors, Apple Computer and GAP Inc. executive George Blankenship with the Alltech Medal of Excellence at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference in Lexington, Kentucky this week.

Alltech’s highest accolade, the medal is awarded annually to someone of great accomplishment and leadership. Previous honorees include former U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell and Norman Borlaug, the father of “the Green Revolution.” Blankenship received the medal in recognition of his ability to create unrivaled customer experiences with two of the most disruptive brands of our time: Apple and Tesla.

“George Blankenship is the epitome of disruption, and I pay homage to his strategies in leadership and breaking the norm,” said Dr. Lyons. “Our ONE conference this year is all about celebrating those who take risks and disrupt the norm.”

“Never ever let anyone get in the way of what you know is the right thing to do deep down inside,” said Blankenship. “This conference is about the ONE thing that makes a difference.”

Blankenship helped develop Apple, Tesla and GAP’s revolutionary retail philosophies and transform the customer experience.

Blankenship’s presentation was fascinating but we can only use a few minutes of it, so here is his conclusion. George Blankenship at Alltech ONE17

Alltech ONE17 Photo Album

Alltech, Audio

Alltech Young Scientists Compete at #ONE17

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

Joshua Gukowsky (left), Jonas de Souza (right)

Two bright thinkers are representing North America in the Alltech Young Scientist (AYS) program in Louisville, Kentucky this week at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference.

Joshua Gukowsky has just finished his undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts and is competing with his research project that explores detecting unsafe levels of antibiotics in food.  “It actually involves the use of gold nano particles,” Gukowsky explains.  “It sounds very fancy, but really they’re just tiny particles of gold and they change color in the presence of the antibiotics.  It’s very simple actually, and it’s very effective for detecting low concentrations of antibiotics and its a very innovative new method to ensure the safety of our foods.”

Jonas de Souza, originally from Brazil, is working on a PhD. at the Michigan State University. He has a passion for research and development and is using that drive to find the most productive ways to manipulate fatty acid for maximum efficiency in dairy cows in a way that offers tangible benefits to producers and consumers.  “My career goal is that I want my research to make a difference; I want my research to be applied and be feasible and accessible to everybody,” de Souza says.

Both agree that being part of the AYS program has been an amazing opportunity.  It has been a chance to meet other young scientists working on a variety of projects from a variety of places.  You can get stuck in your research, de Souza admits, but the conference has broadened his horizons and taught him he can do more than he thought with his research.

Listen to more from these bright young minds in Jamie Johansen’s full interviews here:
Interview with Joshua Gukowsky Interview with Jonas de Souza

Alltech, Audio, Contest, Education

Alltech Celebrates Joy of Disruption

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Dr. Pearse Lyons has built a small empire from modest beginnings in Lexington, Kentucky in 1980 and he has done it all by being disruptive.

“The question is what disruptive road are you on?” Dr. Lyons asked at the beginning of his presentation during the opening session of ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference 2017 – Disrupt the Disruptors.

Lyons talked about some of the many ways that Alltech is examining disruptive ideas for the future of agriculture and beyond, such as finding a way to prevent Alzheimer’s, and said it all starts with a dream. “Mainstream companies do products, great companies do dreams,” he said.

Listen to Dr. Lyons and let him inspire you to dream disruptive dreams: Alltech President Pearse Lyons

AgWired Animal, Alltech, Audio

GROWMARK Foundation Announces Scholarship Recipients

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Fifteen agriculture students have been selected as the first class of recipients of the GROWMARK Foundation scholarship.

More than 125 students from across the United States and Ontario, Canada, applied for the award. Applications were evaluated by a panel of agribusiness professionals, and the funds are available for the fall 2018 semester.

“We are pleased to provide financial support to these fifteen outstanding students,” said Amy Bradford, GROWMARK manager, Corporate Communications and manager of The GROWMARK Foundation. “Their pursuit of higher education in agriculture will position them well to potentially become a part of the GROWMARK System in the future, whether that may be employment at GROWMARK or an FS member cooperative, or as a farmer-owner of their local cooperative.”

The GROWMARK Foundation is focused on programs and activities which support a variety of philanthropic efforts, including youth and young leader education and development and scholarships. ​
List of scholarship winners.

Education, GROWMARK

SMART Farmer Scott VanderWal

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

In this episode of the SMART Farmer podcast we meet Scott VanderWal, a third-generation corn and soybean farmer and cattle feeder from Volga, South Dakota.

In addition to operating the family farm with his father and brothers, Scott serves as vice president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, president of the South Dakota Farm Bureau, and is a board member of the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance.

In this podcast, Scott talks about how farming smarter helps him wear many hats: SMART Farmer Podcast with Scott VanderWal, South Dakota

Subscribe to the SMART Farmer podcast

Learn more about USFRA and SMART Farm

AFBF, AgWired Animal, Audio, SMART Farmer, USFRA

Monday Night Brewing Winner at Alltech Craft Brews Fest

Chuck Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Dr. Pearse Lyons and Shakia Hollis of Monday Night Brewing, winner of the 2017 Commonwealth Cup, at the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fest. Hollis took home the overall best beer award for Tears of My Enemies.

Besides missing the Alltech Ideas Conference (ONE17) this week I also missed the Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fest. It was another stand out event from the looks of it, with over 5,000 craft beer aficionados in attendance. The event took place Saturday at the Lexington Convention Center. This festival featured over 65 breweries from across the country, and food from local vendors and some of the best chefs in the state of Kentucky.

More than 50 breweries from four countries submitted 325 unique beers, which were judged by an expert panel of judges according to Beer Judge Certification Program guidelines. At the end of the day, and the bottom of the glass, the Commonwealth Cup was awarded to Tears of My Enemies, a scotch barrel-aged milk stout brewed by Monday Night Brewing in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Alltech Craft Brews & Food Fest marked the beginning of ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference (ONE17), held May 21–24 in Lexington, Kentucky. The international conference is expected to be attended by nearly 4,000 people from as many as 80 countries. For more information, visit one.alltech.com.

Look for more to come from Lexington since Jamie and Cindy are already there attending the conference this week.


It’s Time to Disrupt the Disruptors

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

Disruption is everywhere. Disruptive ideas are impacting the way we farm. This year ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference is centered around creating a world-wide disruption of your own. We are just days away from the awe-inspiring event and spoke with Aidan Connolly, Alltech’s Chief Innovation Officer & Vice President, to learn what Disrupt the Disruptors really means.

Aidan said the Alltech conference is always about thought leadership. “What’s coming is very exciting, but will not allow us to continue doing things the way we have done before. If you have come for business as usual, this is not the right place to be. This is going to challenge you. It might make you feel a little uncomfortable. It’s going to disrupt your life. But hopefully it will make you see a more profitable and successful future for you and your business.”

Cindy and I will be packing our bags very soon to embark on another Alltech conference. Follow along this week as we fully experience #ONE17’s world-renowned speakers, cutting-edge science and technology research and a little entertainment and networking.

Listen to my complete interview with Aidan here: Interview with Aidan Connolly, Alltech

AgWired Animal, Alltech, Audio, Technology

AEM Holds Rural Broadband Access Panel

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) hosted Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey and representatives from equipment manufacturers John Deere and HammerHead Trenchless for a panel discussion on Capitol Hill on May 18th focused on the expansion of rural broadband access as part of lawmakers’ work this year on infrastructure.

The event was in conjunction with Infrastructure Week 2017 and was organized as part of AEM’s Infrastructure Vision 2050 initiative. The thought leadership initiative is “focused on crafting a vision for a long-term, national plan for U.S. infrastructure and how we [AEM] will move people, freight and energy in the future.”

Panelists included Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey; Nick Tindall, AEM Senior Director, Government & Industry Relations; Mark Lewellen, Spectrum Advocacy Manager, John Deere; and Hammerhead Trenchless president Kevin Smith. The panel was moderated by Doug Brake, Policy Analyst, ITIF.

Audio is available for download from this event:
Bill Northey comments 2:42
Mark Lewellen comments 5:05
Nick Tindall comments 1:32
Kevin Smith comments 1:32
Panel answers questions 37:41

AEM, Ag Group, AgWired AgNewsWire, Audio, Equipment, Infrastructure, Internet

Farmers: Smart About Their Phones & Beyond

Chuck Zimmerman Leave a Comment

My morning inspiration today comes from a post on the Woodruff blog by Darlene Hanenburg, Senior Technical and Content Writer. Darlene writes about farmers consumption of digital media and makes some very good points. Here is an insightful excerpt.

The truth is, the agri-marketing landscape continues to evolve as new media and technology are introduced and become more widely accepted. Today we have more options than ever to effectively engage farmers and ranchers, and they have more options for getting the information they need to help run and manage their operations. What’s more, the newest generation returning to the farm is extremely comfortable with digital technology. That makes understanding how, when and why farmers and ranchers use various digital media channels essential for agri-marketers wanting to deliver the right content at the right time to the right person using the right channel.

I remember writing back in 2005 about DTN going mobile.

While people in some of the traditional media are still trying to hold on to the good old days DTN is working hard to transition to the future. I haven’t seen them publish a farmer media usage study and yet they’re moving forward. I used to work there so I know it’s not any easier for them to change than anyone else. They were the cutting edge of information delivery with the satellite-delivered weather, market and news data. But people need to be mobile. That was always one problem with the “old system.” You had to be there in front of the monitor to get it. Now you don’t!

Do you remember the DTN monitors? I’m sure they are actually still in use although I haven’t seen one in years. But the reality of today is that smart phones, tablets, small fast laptops, ubiquitous internet and now connected cars are being used by farmers who are really no different than the general population when it comes to where they get their information.

In the photo you can see our AgWired App on my iPhone 7 Plus and Samsung S8. We introduced the first ag news app back in 2010 and it is going strong, although I need a new developer to do some work for me on it. Know anyone?

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AgNerd, Apps, Media