Off To Kansas City To Plan IFAJ 2009

Chuck Zimmerman

IFAJPosting may be a little light today since I’ll be in Kansas City, MO. Tomorrow a group of us will be meeting to start pre-planning the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists Congress 2009. I think the plan is to hold it in conjunction with the Ag Media Summit that year. If you have any ideas you’d like to offer, please feel free to let me know and I’ll be happy to pass them along.

Ag Media Summit, IFAJ

Finally, A Preview Plugin

Chuck Zimmerman

I’ve never written a post to AgWired that I could preview in WordPress until now! I guess I got so used to it that I didn’t know there was a plugin that allows me to see what I’ve created before you do.

I don’t know how many of you have a blog or use WordPress but if so you have to have this plugin and if I can install it anyone can. You can find it on Matt’s Googly Site.

Blogging, General

Growing Point Offers Virtual Plot Tours

Chuck Zimmerman

Pioneer's Growing Point WebsiteYou have to have a password to get into the Pioneer Growing Point Website but inside you’ll find a pretty cool feature right now. Virtual Plot Tours. I know they’re not a “new” thing but these are very well done in my opinion. They’re short videos that let you see the product in action and then there’s a ton of support information available. It’s also done by hybrid number so of course there’s lots of videos!

Who else is doing virtual plot tours? Let me know about them and we’ll feature them here too.


PA Governor Invests in Ag & Tourism

Chuck Zimmerman

PA Governor Ed RendelHave you heard about Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendel? I would find it hard to believe you haven’t. Unless he’s wasting a lot of public relations dollars. Here’s the latest from the PA Gov today:

Governor Edward G. Rendell today announced investments of more than $1.9 million to strengthen Pennsylvania’s multi-billion dollar agriculture and tourism industries. “Pennsylvania is investing in 11 projects that will help two critical components of our growing economy — agriculture and tourism,” Governor Rendell said. “Our resources are helping to create and retain more than 60 jobs.”

That’s a story I think. I mainly post it because this guy sends out more news releases than anyone I know. It’s daily and they are well written and they’re often about things I’m interested in that have to do with ag in one way or another. I feel like I know him better than any other state governor and I’ve never met him. That’s includes Matt Blunt here in Missouri!

Anyway, maybe they have a strategy in all this. I know I just used one of his releases on our sister renewable fuel news blog, DomesticFuel.

This announcement of the 1.9 million is just a drop in the bucket too. The PA Gov has “enacted one of the largest economic stimulus packages in the country – 2.3 billion dollars of programs and grants designed to revitalize jobs, bolster business growth, and sustain communities.” That’s a lot of economic stimulus! You can find out all about it at I need to talk to him about Talking News Releases!


Sirius Names New VP of Marketing

Chuck Zimmerman

SiriusYou may be wondering. What’s Sirius got to do with ag communications? Well we might be surprised how many of these Sirius and XM satellite radio receivers are out there in trucks, tractors and combines. I’d sure like to know. I’ve written to them before trying to get them interested in some good ag news programming without much success. Hoever, today Sirius announced a new marketing director. What do you think the chances are that he’d have some influence with the programming department? Would he see ag as a good target for his product? On the surface you’d think rural customers would be a target but I’m wondering if the numbers are there to make them care.

SIRIUS Satellite Radio announced today the appointment of Martin Lee as Senior Vice President of Marketing. Lee will be responsible for all aspects of SIRIUS brand marketing and will report directly to Scott Greenstein, President of Entertainment and Sports, who will continue to oversee all marketing efforts. Lee, who was recently selected as 2005 Marketer of the Next Generation by Brandweek magazine, brings a wealth of national and international experience in product and brand marketing to SIRIUS, including eight years in consumer electronics.


Pioneer Has 22 New Soybean Varieties

Chuck Zimmerman

Pioneer Hi-BredOkay, here’s some more new varieties. Phew. They just keep coming out. It’s the result of all those years of work we’ve reported on for so long right? We knew they’d be showing up. This time it’s Pioneer.

Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., is introducing 22 new “M-Series” soybean varieties for the 2006 planting season. Leading the way are Pioneer® brand soybean varieties with resistance to soybean cyst nematode (SCN) and Phytophthora root rot as well as tolerance to sudden death syndrome (SDS) and iron chlorosis.

The varieties range in maturity from Group 00 for northern growing areas to Group VI for the southern U.S. All of the varieties contain the Roundup Ready¹ gene.


AgStar Financial Delivering Harvest Lunches

Chuck Zimmerman

Brownfield NetworkAs we struggle to get in touch with growers in the middle of harvest someone’s reaching them the right way. That’s AgStar Financial. This story was on Brownfield Network today and it’s just a “good” story so I had to point you to it.

You’ve all been there, harvest time, the combine is running flat-out, the trucks are just barely keeping up and you know you don’t have many days before the weather turns. The last thing you want to see is some guy driving out in your field to talk to you…unless he’s bringing lunch! This is a very familiar happening for farmers in Minnesota and western Wisconsin. AgStar Financial Services calls it their Harvest Lunch program. Since 1989, AgStar employees have delivered lunches to farmers in the field during the fall harvest.

Of course you’ll find an audio file to listen to as well.

Agribusiness, Audio

D&PL Announce New Cotton Varieties

Chuck Zimmerman

D&PLThe new product announcements just keep on coming. Delta & Pine Company has a whole range of new cotton varieties. The announcement gets into some pretty technical stuff that includes a lot of number and letters. I recommend visiting their website to learn more.

Delta and Pine Land Company announces the commercialization of the much-heralded new mid-maturity, stacked-gene cotton
variety, DP 454 BG/RR, plus new exciting Bollgard® II/Roundup Ready® Flex varieties for 2006.

“As the leading cotton seed supplier to U.S. producers, D&PL has the breeding and research capabilities to keep America’s cotton farmers armed with a wide range of maturities and technologies to meet farm requirements and textile mill demands,” said Jim Willeke, vice president of sales and marketing at D&PL. “Our 2006 cotton variety lineup offers producers yield, fiber and more technologies than ever before.”


LPC Has Their Own Boot Camp

Chuck Zimmerman

Livestock Publications Council Boot CampWe’ve reported on one kind of Boot Camp here on AgWired and now we’ve got another one to point you to. It’s the Livestock Publications Council, Boot Camp ver. 1.05.

Friday, November 11, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Registration 8:30-9:00 am

Executive Inn,Louisville, KY ($95 per night), 800-626-2706, (Book immediately as all hotels close to the fairgrounds will fill up fast because of NAILE!) Other options: Best Western Ashton Inn, 502-375-2233, Courtyard by Marriott, 502-368-5678, Howard Johnson’s, 502-363-9952, Hampton Inn, 502-366-8100, Comfort Inn, 502-361-5008

LPC Members, $60, Non-members, $75, Students, $35, (Includes lunch)

Registration Deadline:
November 4, No-Shows will be billed

This Boot Camp will offer affordable and practical ideas for you to take back and actually put to use. A great opportunity for anyone in the design or production department for your publication!


55 Percent of Corporations Are Blogging

Chuck Zimmerman

Are you still wondering about blogging and don’t know if it has an application for you and your company? Are you reading this? If so, you have an involvement in blogging! At the just completed BlogOn 2005 in New York they released the results of Guidewire Group’s “Blogging in the Enterprise,” a first-ever study of the adoption of blogging by communications and marketing professionals. Now I’ve always told my kids, “Just because someone else is doing it doesn’t make it right.” However, there’s a lot of corporate blogging going on folks!

Here’s an example of an interesting tidbit from their results:

• Almost 90% of those surveyed said they are or plan to use blogging in their communications efforts.

A story on the study appeared on and had even more information from the study.

The poll of corporate marketing and communications professionals found that 55 percent of corporations are blogging, with 91.4 percent of those using them for internal communications and 96.6 percent for external outreach. More than half had launched their blogs within the last year.