Future of Agriculture

Future of Agriculture – New Zealand Ag Innovation with Stu Bradbur

Stu Bradbury is a Strategy Adviser at Sprout Agritech Accelerator, New Zealand’s top-rated ag startup accelerator. They back startups that offer bold and innovative solutions to some of agriculture’s biggest problems. Stu’s role is to identify their country’s most promising startup companies as well as mentor and help them grow to success. He has extensive experience in product commercialization and services in the agricultural sector.

Stu joins me today to discuss the ag startup economy in New Zealand as well as how their company’s accelerator programs work. He shares his career background, his experience starting an irrigation company, and his experience working with Sprout. He describes what they look for in a startup as well as what those startups can expect from their programs. Stu also shares how Sprout initially conducted their marketing strategies.

Stay tuned for our Five-Minute Farmer segment with Jana Hocken, author of The Lean Dairy Farm.

You need to understand how your product or service affects your customer’s life; how they’re going to live with it.” – Stu Bradbury

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Stu’s academic and career background and his entrepreneurial journey.
  • Why agriculture is the backbone of New Zealand.
  • New Zealand’s drive for the numerous agricultural inventions and innovations.
  • Why he focused on irrigation tech more than other systems.
  • What he would have done differently if he knew the resources available when he was starting out.
  • What it’s like to work with Sprout AgriTech and what they look for in startups.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Stu Bradbury:

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. 

Join the Conversation!

To get your most pressing ag questions answered and share your perspective on various topics we’ve discussed on the Future of Agriculture podcast, head over to SpeakPipe.com/FutureofAg and leave a recorded message!

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

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Future of Agriculture – From Law to Corporate to Investor to Startup Strategist with Dan Cosgrove

Dan Cosgrove is the Chief Strategy Officer at Growers Edge. Growers Edge is a FinTech company that provides financial programs and solutions for the service of the agricultural sector. He is also a Venture Partner at Radicle Growth, an acceleration fund financed by top agtech investors. Dan has extensive experience in business development in the ag industry and is skilled in negotiation, entrepreneurship, international business licensing as well as Mergers, Acquisitions, and Venture Capital.

Dan joins me today to discuss the details involved in deciding what startup to accelerate and what company qualifies for an acquisition. He shares the story of how he got started in the industry and shares the highlights of his extensive career. He explains how he became an entrepreneur while working within another company, describes some of the challenges farmers face today, and the kind of technology startups need to focus on for the future. Dan also shares his best tips for startups looking for investment.

Stay tuned for our first segment of Five-Minute Farmer with Gavin Spoor of Spoor Farms.

“You should take feedback from everybody you talk to and learn a bit of something.” – Dan Cosgrove

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • How Dan got started in the agricultural industry.
  • The opportunities and roles he had with Corteva.
  • How he managed to become entrepreneurial while working within another company.
  • His current role at Growers Edge and what Growers Edge is about.
  • The two challenges that farmers have today that aren’t being addressed properly.
  • The role he played in the Granular acquisition.
  • The difference between corporate venture capital than traditional venture capital.
  • Quantifying the value of strategic benefits in the venture level.
  • His advice to startups seeking investment.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Dan Cosgrove:

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture: Behind Wine: An Inside Look Into the Modern Vineyard with Richard Hoff of Mercer Ranches

Richard Hoff is the Director of Viticulture of Mercer Ranches. Mercer Ranches is a grape farm that produces high-quality wine through strict quality control and precise technology. Richard is considered an expert in wine tasting, wine manufacturing, and general viticulture. He obtained his Master’s Degree in Viticulture from Washington State University and his Bachelor’s Degree in Horticulture from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.

Richard joins me today to discuss in great detail how the production of wine works – from the grape to the bottle. He describes the vineyards Mercer owns, the grapes they produce, their different yields, and their farming practices. He explains some of the details involved in processing such as pruning and de-leafing, as well as the technologies they use. Richard also shares some of the problems he looks forward to being solved by technology in the future.

“There’s just not much of an argument anymore whether mechanization is as good as hands.” – Richard Hoff

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Introducing the vineyards, the varieties of grapes they produce, and their wine production.
  • The time it takes to go from planting grapes to extracting wine.
  • The longevity of a vineyard before it has to be replaced.
  • The value of specific varieties of grapes per ton.
  • Various labor challenges they faced that mechanization and automation solved.
  • Implementing new technology and machinery in the vineyards.
  • The methods they apply when creating new vineyards.
  • Determining the best combination that marries quantity with quality.
  • The level of attention required to grow the best grapes possible.
  • The effect of mechanization on data collection.
  • Problems he hopes technology will solve in the future.

Connect with Richard Hoff:

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture – Saving Bees Via IoT with Dr. Fiona Edwards Murphy of ApisProtect

Dr. Fiona Edwards Murphy is the CEO and Co-Founder of ApisProtect. ApisProtect is a company that innovates the agricultural industry with its advanced Internet of Things (IoT) technology. Specifically, they help beekeepers both small and large gather the necessary data from their bee colonies through sensors. They aim to help preserve bees and perhaps even reverse the rising colony losses around the world.

Fiona joins me today to share her passion for saving bees and how she came up with the idea of using sensor technology. She describes the current bee problem and its possible implications in and outside the agricultural sector. She explains how their sensor technology works, how it helps beekeepers, and its potential usage outside of the pollination industry. Fiona also describes their business model and how they found the market that supported their company.

“We collect the sensor data and use machine learning to convert the raw data into useful information for the beekeeper.” – Dr. Fiona Edwards Murphy

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • The current situation with the honeybee problem.
  • The factors affecting honeybee deaths across the world.
  • Small and large scale beekeepers and how their businesses operate.
  • Her academic background and how she came to be involved in saving bees.
  • Using sensors inside beehives and the types of sensors they use.
  • Problems that can be detected and solved by sensors.
  • The projects their company has started and their current business plans.
  • How beekeepers are benefiting from their programs.
  • The challenges they have encountered in their business.
  • Fixing and maintaining the sensors they provide to their clients.
  • Their plans for World Bee Day and their partnerships.

Connect with Dr. Fiona Edwards Murphy:

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture: Todays Farm Economy vs the 1980s with Glen & Jason Newcomer

Glen and Jason Newcomer are the sixth-generation owners and operators of Newcomer Farms. Having been established during the time of the Civil War, Newcomer Farms is one of the oldest farms in America. Glen has extensive experience in farm management, agronomy support, and agricultural risk management. Jason returned to the farm after college to help the family operate and innovate the farm to match current trends.

Glen and Jason join me to share what it’s like to manage a farm that’s survived many troubling times. They discuss the difference between how the farm was managed decades ago and how it is managed today. Jason explains the reason why he returned to farming and Glen describes some of the tasks Jason helped relieve him from. They also share how they select their board of advisors and their perspective on farm operations.

“We always have to find ways to become more efficient and more profitable.” – Glen Newcomer

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Glen and Jason Newcomer’s agricultural background and the history of their farm.
  • Why Jason is passionate about managing their farm.
  • The difference between how they operated generations ago and today.
  • Why they believe they’re in a pinched economy right now.
  • The issues they encountered in the ’80s versus the issues today.
  • Why Jason returned to farm operations.
  • Their approach to succession of their farm operations.
  • The new tools they utilize in their day-to-day farm operations.
  • Expectations from the newer generation of farmers.

Connect with Glen and Jason Newcomer:

This episode is sponsored by: Granular – Manage Your Farm with Confidence

Granular is an agriculture software company dedicated to building stronger, more profitable farms. Since 2014, Granular has become a leader in developing web and mobile apps grounded in advanced data science technology to help farmers make data-driven, real-time business and agriculture decisions with greater confidence.

To learn more about how Granular’s digital solutions can help you better manage your farm, visit Granular.ag.

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture: Online Engagement and Bringing Ag to SXSW with Janice Person

Janice Person is the Online Engagement Director at Bayer Crop Science. In this role, she is responsible for social media and internet outreach towards influencers, bloggers, and the general public throughout the agriculture space. She has connected with thousands of food, lifestyle, and agricultural bloggers and those numbers are still growing. She also blogs on her personal website, JP Loves Cotton.

Janice joins me today to share her responsibilities as Online Engagement Director and some of her notable accomplishments in this role. She describes how she found her passion for the ag industry, especially cotton. She discusses some of the more common mistakes people make on social media and what she’s learned from her experience. Janice also explains what people can look forward to SXSW and why people interested in agriculture should attend.

“Sometimes it’s a lot easier to start a conversation when people know they have some common ground with you.” – Janice Person

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Creating a position title and walking into a position no one’s ever had.
  • Why she started the blog and how it lead to her next career move.
  • Knowing whether or not you’re doing a great job in online engagement.
  • The mistakes most people make on social media.
  • How she uses Quora to spread her influence and engage more people.
  • Why the South by Southwest conference is one of the best.
  • The benefits of being part of another organization.

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Janice Person:

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture: Computer Vision for Herd Management at the 2-1-4-3 Approach with Aidan Connolly

Aidan Connolly is the Chief Executive Officer at Cainthus, a software company dedicated to helping farmers collect the necessary and critical information they need to manage their farms better. Cainthus’ current project involves the use of sensors that interpret visual information from various farm animals. He is also the author of 2-1-4-3, a book on growing your business. Before becoming Cainthus’ CIO, Aidan previously held the same position at Alltech, an agtech company which he served for over 28 years.

Aidan joins me today to share his current business venture and how this new company can help the farming industry as a whole. He discusses their current sensor project, its applications, and how it can improve farm efficiency. He also explains the overall theme of his book as well as what the title 2-1-4-3 means.

“Make it as honest and uncomfortable as you can be in terms of evaluating what your business really is today.” – Aidan Connolly

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Why Aidan left his previous company and the reason he founded Cainthus.
  • His current projects and how they make use of facial recognition tech on cows.
  • Using sensors in farms and the challenges in managing multiple species.
  • Solving “cow bullying” on dairy farms.
  • How sensors can help find solutions to problems in farming cattle.
  • Why he chose to focus on farm sensors instead of other technologies.
  • What he wants people to learn from reading his book.
  • The 2-1-4-3 approach explained and what to expect from his book.
  • Is investing in agtech a little too overhyped?

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Aidan Connolly:

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture – Upcycling and the Value of Ruminant Agriculture with Dr. Sara Place

Dr. Sara Place is the Senior Director of Sustainable Beef Production Research at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, an organization that seeks to innovate and educate its members regarding their industry. She specializes in livestock sustainability systems and livestock production research. Sara obtained her Ph.D. in Animal Biology from UC Davis and worked as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Animal Science at Oklahoma State University.

Sara joins me today to discuss the idea of connecting sustainability and the beef industry. She describes the current state of the beef industry and highlights its effects on global warming. She explains why removing cattle is not the solution to global warming and shares insight into how upcycling can be applied in the beef industry. Sara also shares some of the promising sustainability projects they plan to launch this year and in the future.

“We’re going to have 2 billion more people coming to dinner in the next thirty years, and we only have one planet Earth.” – Dr. Sara Place

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • How beef can become a sustainable resource.
  • Why it matters what more than 80% of cattle eat and its effects on the environment.
  • What Upcycling is and how they plan to use it to make beef sustainable.
  • Examples of Upcycling outside the beef industry.
  • How ruminants differ from other farm animals.
  • The truth about global warming in the context of agriculture.
  • What made her passionate about agriculture and the environment.
  • The sustainability programs they plan to launch in the near future.

Connect with Sara Place

Future of Agriculture – Project Level Equity for Ag Infrastructure with Aaron Ratner of Ultra Capital

Aaron Ratner is the Managing Director at Ultra Capital, a company that finances small and mid-size startups in the sustainable technology industry. He has over 20 years of experience in advisory, international investment, and project development with a focus on agriculture and technology. Aaron obtained his MsM from Stanford University and his BA from the University of Pennsylvania.

Aaron joins me today to discuss what Ultra Capital is about and what they aim to accomplish with their current business model. He shares his passion for sustainable technologies and preserving Mother Nature. He describes how their business works and their criteria for investing. Aaron also explains why banks aren’t as committed to funding the kind of companies they work with.

“It is incredibly fulfilling, trying to make the world a better place. From that, there is really no turning back.” – Aaron Ratner

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Aaron’s definition of project level equity.
  • What he believes is the one key success factor for Ultra Capital.
  • How their business model runs and a few real world examples.
  • Why banks hesitate to loan money for the kind of clients they handle.
  • The reason he became passionate about this type of business.
  • Their primary criteria and requirements in a startup before they invest.
  • What the future holds for Ultra Capital and their upcoming projects.

Connect with Aaron Ratner

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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

Future of Agriculture – International Ag Development through Venture Capital with Euler Bropleh of Vested World

Euler Bropleh is the Founder & Managing Director of Vested World, an investment platform that seeks to bridge the gap between private investors and startups in emerging markets. Euler focuses on emerging markets because he knows what it’s live in a country that barely made any progress in the last 50 years and how access to substantial capital can make a huge difference in the economy of a developing nation. He has served as an angel investor to multiple businesses in Sub-Saharan Africa, some of which are in the ag industry.

Euler joins me today to share his commitment to helping developing countries such as Nigeria, Kenya, and Uganda. He discusses how Vested World works and describes some of the companies they helped grow and prosper. He explains some of the risks involved in their business as well as some of its more notable benefits. Euler also discusses what the FIERCE acronym stands for and how he bases his business model around it.

“If you do well by the people you’re working with, your company’s going to perform better, and everyone benefits from it.” – Euler Bropleh

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • What Vested World is and its business focus.
  • The history of Vested World and some of their notable investments.
  • Risk and benefits in investing in developing countries.
  • Ag-related companies they’ve invested in.
  • What made Euler want to invest in Sub-Saharan Africa?
  • What it’s like to grow up in an African country.
  • Balancing the needs of the communities he is impacting.
  • What FIERCE stands for and how he considers it with their investment models.

Connect with Euler Bropleh

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: 

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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