Get Your Suit Biopolished

Chuck Zimmerman

American Sheep Industry Association LogoAlthough I live in Missouri, I’m from Florida so I didn’t grow up wearing wool. I came to love it during about 5 months out of the year though after moving here to the great white north. I thought this story was interesting mainly because of the process described in the release. It’s “biopolishing.” At first you might think that means taking a very tiny buffing machine and applying it to some new genetically enhanced micro-organism or something. Not so. Read about it in the release from the American Sheep Industry Association.

ASI ANNOUNCES NEW WOOL PROCESSING METHOD

DENVER, Colo. – Wash and wear wool has been available for many years. Unfortunately, the processes used to achieve washability, while completely successful, require expensive equipment. Recognizing this, the American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) teamed with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Eastern Regional Research Center (ERRC) in 2001 to develop a revolutionary new environmentally friendly wool-processing method, called biopolishing, which is now ready for commercial application. This inexpensive process will change the comfort level of wool garments.

ERRC’s Jeanette Cardamone, Ph.D., developed a process to remove the outer-lipid layer from the wool fiber using activated peroxide. Removal of the lipid layer is required for the second part of the process to be successful. In the second step, wool is exposed to a special blend of enzymes that ‘digest’ the now exposed scales on the surface of the wool fiber. The scales on the fiber surface cause wool shrinkage; by removing them, shrinkage is minimized and the resulting garments are now washable. In addition, biopolishing makes wool fabrics brighter, whiter and more easily worn next to the skin.

To date, all of the biopolishing mill trials have been successful at treating knitted or woven fabrics; however, trials are currently under way to determine biopolishing’s success with yarns and loose fibers.

For more information contact Rita Kourlis Samuelson.

Ag Group

Show Me The Angus Future

Chuck Zimmerman

National Angus Conference LogoI think one of the most interesting things about the announcement for the upcoming National Angus Conference & Tour is the logo. I had to look at it a few minutes to get it. Of course it’s been a long day and I’m tired but I was thinking “Where’s the beef?”. Then I thought it was an old Jimi Hendrix or Santana album cover but finally I can see that it’s someone staring into a crystal ball, duh.

I like it. It’s not “traditional.” It’s creative and stands out from the crowd. Way to go American Angus Association! If I can’t make the tour please send photos and info for me to post!

2005 National Angus Conference & Tour set in Show-Me State

The 2005 National Angus Conference & Tour is set for Sept. 27-29. Hosted by the American Angus Association, and sponsored by Purina Mills LLC, the major partner, and Alpharma Animal Health, this year’s event “Show-Me the Future,” includes a half-day conference and 1 ½ days of tours throughout Missouri.

The Association will conduct “Back to the Basics” seminars on Sept. 27, starting at 1:30 p.m. at the Hilton Kansas City Airport. Registration opens from noon to 5 p.m. The event kicks off with dinner that evening and keynote speaker Tom Field, Colorado State University, and his presentation, “I’ll Show you the Future.” (full release)

For more information contact Shelia Stannard.

Ag Group

Tracking News Releases Chapter 1

Chuck Zimmerman

This is the first in a series of articles I’m writing on the issue of tracking news releases. It’s a big issue and I’m hoping for some feedback on it. The primary income source for ZimmComm is our Talking News Release service so it’s very important to us as well as our clients.

Chapter 1 ZimmComm Logo

How many reporters used my news release? What kind of pickup do you get? Can I have a list of the stations that used my release?

These are a few of the questions we get asked all the time. However, while we would dearly love to provide a detailed listing of the reporters, stations and airtimes of the stories that included our client’s news releases, that’s just not possible or practical with broadcast radio news. It never has been, and even with the most sophisticated e-mail tracking system (which we have yet to find) we might be able to find out who takes a look, but not who actually uses it on the air.

However, there are some things we can control that will increase usage. Let’s start with the most basic factor that affects media use of a news release. Is the content of the release newsworthy? This is the most important reason why news releases get used or ignored by reporters. If you write a commercial then your release is probably going to be sent to the sales manager at the station or network who should contact you with rate information to purchase advertising. If the release is extremely complicated, long and filled with technical terms that can’t even be pronounced by the average person then it is likely to be ignored. However, if it’s newsworthy, well written, and pertinent to the reporter’s coverage area then it stands a much better chance of seeing airtime. . .(full article).

Talking News Release

IFAJ Trip Sponsored By Pioneer Hi-Bred

Chuck Zimmerman

IFAJ Logo I haven’t written much about it yet but my trip to Switzerland for the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists is getting closer. I’m working on an interview with the coordinator which will be posted as a ZimmCast.

Pioneer Hi-BredHere’s the good news though. My trip will be sponsored by Pioneer Hi-Bred! This means that you’ll be seeing the Pioneer logo in my posts about the trip. I really appreciate Pioneer’s sponsorship, which will make this trip possible. It’s also a first ever ag blog sponsorship. At least I don’t know of any others.

Blogging, IFAJ

The Indy Car Excitement Is Building

Chuck Zimmerman

Team Ethanol CarIn just a few days it’ll be time to listen to the roar of the Indy Cars, especially #91, Team Ethanol, driven by Paul Dana. I’ll be there for the media event on Friday and through the weekend for the race! The whole media coordination is being done by the Ethanol Promotion Information Council and their agency, The Integer Group. I can tell you that Tom Slunecka and Joanna Schroeder have been putting in overtime on this one.

Indy 500The big deal is because the Indy Racing League will be converting to ethanol for all its cars by 2007. Next year will be a transition year. I’ll find out a lot more about this on Friday and bring it to you with pictures and audio from Indy 500 weekend.

Ag Group

Beef Checkoff Continuation Topic of Special MBIC Report

Chuck Zimmerman

MBIC LogoAs I posted earlier, the U. S. Supreme Court decided today to continue the Beef Checkoff. Therefore it was time for a special edition of the Missouri Beef Industry Council Report. I spoke to MBIC Chairman David Dick of Sedalia, MO. David also serves on the Cattlemen’s Beef Board operating committee at the national level.

Download MP3 File

The MBIC Report is an AgriMarketing Pros podcast which you can subscribe to in the “Interviews” sidebar.

Ag Group, Audio, MBIC, MBIC Report, Podcasts

Supreme Court Rules In Favor of Beef Checkoff

Chuck Zimmerman

I know there’s a big sigh of relief at the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and some disappointment at the Livestock Marketing Association but at least the drama is over for now. Although I don’t have a release yet from the Beef Board directly, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association has already distributed one.

Supreme Court Rules Beef Checkoff Constitutional Cattlemen's Beef Board

DENVER (May 23, 2005) – The U.S. Supreme Court today ruled that the Beef Checkoff Program is constitutional, thus allowing the program’s demand-building efforts to continue. The decision overturns a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit that found the federal Beef Promotion and Research Act in violation of the First Amendment. The checkoff has helped grow consumer demand for beef more than 25 percent since 1998 and has increased the prices that producers receive for their cattle.
“We are elated,” said Jim McAdams, an Adkins, Texas, cattleman and president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA). “Throughout the lengthy litigation process, we believed in the merits of our case and the merits of the beef checkoff.” He said, “We anticipated a positive decision. This is a victory for all producers who want demand-building efforts in beef safety, nutrition and promotion continued.”

Cattlemen have supported a checkoff assessment since 1922. January 2005 independent research indicates that a significant 73 percent of beef producers support the current $1-per-head beef checkoff program. Upon the Supreme Court’s acceptance of the beef checkoff case in May 2004, an overwhelming 113 state and national beef industry and general agriculture organizations signed a friend-of-the-court amicus brief in support of the beef checkoff. The brief was also signed by attorneys general from 35 states and Puerto Rico and the chairmen of both the U.S. House and Senate Agriculture Committees.

For more information contact Joe Schuele.

Ag Group

Blogs Sending Traditional Media Into Dustbin of History

Chuck Zimmerman

Blog Business SummitAt least that’s what an article in the Wall Street Journal seems to say. I don’t have a subscription to the Wall Street Journal but maybe you do and then you can read the full article mentioned in Steve Broback’s post over at Blog Business Summit. Steve says:

According to the Wall Street Journal special report How Old Media Can Survive In a New World, Blogs are prominent among technologies threatening to “push the traditional newspaper, television, radio, music and advertising industries into the dustbin of history.”

A user poll on the site indicates that readers say newspapers (by far) should have the most to fear.

Many reports of late have covered the crisis facing newsapapers, and this article does too. In addition, the WSJ details the challenges facing the TV networks.

* The nightly broadcasts on the big three networks have had a 28.4% decline in total viewers since 1991. In 1978, the three original broadcast networks captured about 90% of the prime-time audience. Today, it’s less than 50%. The Journal credits this to cable and the advent of online news sources, blogs and email alerts.

Steve also has some other excerpts available on his post that specifically mention some of the advantages of a blog over traditional media.

He hasn’t mentioned when the next Blog Business Summit will be but I’m looking forward to attending if possible.

Blogging

What In The Wild Blue Yonder In This Week’s ZimmCast

Chuck Zimmerman

ZimmCastAlthough I interview Harry Thibedeau with the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC), we talk about Wild Blue, the satellite internet access company that says it will be available by the end of June. It’s a long-anticipated service launch and Harry says NRTC has put in a bunch of money so I know they’re anxious to get it going. Wild Blue is just one more reason why you’ll be seeing high speed access, even in the country! Just think of all the blog reading those new high speed customers will be doing.

Here’s what the Wild Blue website says:

Wild Blue LogoWildBlue offers you high-speed Internet access via satellite to almost every corner of the U.S.! Imagine “always on”, lightning fast connections to the Internet. No more dialing in. No more delays. No more wondering if high-speed Internet will arrive in your town. Get connected the way you’ve always wanted to: fast.

You can listen to the ZimmCast here: ZimmCast

You can always subscribe to the ZimmCast by using the podcast file in our ZimmCast sidebar.

Ag Group, Audio, Internet, Podcasts, ZimmCast

Avoiding The Apple

Chuck Zimmerman

He’s a good friend but I just don’t think he’s going to convince me to start on an Apple at this point. I made my decision to be an “IBM” computer dude when I bought my first Compaq Portable. Thanks anyway Evan. He wrote this note after we announced our giveaway of an Apple Ipod Shuffle.

Good Morning Chuck,

Evan Slack Network

Thanks for your support of an Apple product.
As an individual who likes to be on the leading of technology, you would look great with an Apple Power Book.
All the best,

Evan

You can find Evan at the Evan Slack Network.

General