Future of Agriculture

Future of Agriculture – A Future Without Bacon and Eggs is No Future At All with Hannah Thompson-Weeman of the Animal Agriculture Alliance

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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Future of Agriculture Podcast – Rural Living Sheep Ranching and Totes MaGoats with Sara Hollenbeck of Hollenbeck Ranch

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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Future of Agriculture: Growing Cannabis and Other Fun Agronomy Topics with Dr. Curtis Livesay of Dynamite Ag

Today’s guest is a scientist, researcher, and the founder of Dynamite Ag – a sales and consulting company founded in 2012. Growing up in a Christian household, Dr. Curtis Livesay was told not to do drugs, to research about it. This pursuit of knowledge led him to acquire a Ph.D. in interpersonal communication and research methods. It is also the heart of his company – to do great research and disseminate good and useful information.

On today’s episode, Dr. Curtis shares his knowledge, experience, and viewpoints about a variety of topics such as critical agronomic problems, lies fed to farmers, and specific ways to deal with particular agronomic concerns.

 

“Don’t just try something different, but pay attention to where you put it.” – Dr. Curtis Livesay

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • How Dr. Curtis found his niche and how he finds the people he works with
  • Difference between plant recoverable and plant available
  • How farmers should balance the economics of farming with environmental stewardship
  • Yield contest over profitability contest
  • What volunteer corn is, why it’s a problem and what farmers can do about it

 

Check Out Dr. Curtis Livesay Across the Net:

 

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Future of Agriculture: Cows-Canada-and Quotas with Wendell Schumm of Wallenstein Feed and the Ontario AgCast

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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Future of Agriculture 044: Grassfed Beef Through Adaptive Multi-Paddock Grazing with Russ Conser of Standard Soil

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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Future of Agriculture 043: Sharing Ag With Over 2 Million People – Joel Cowley President and CEO of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

 

Future of Agriculture: Agtech Foodtech and Ag Entrepreneurship with Louisa Burwood-Taylor of Agfunder

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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Subscribe now to join the community and gain access to our robust content library and grow your network by connecting to other industry players.

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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Future of Agriculture: The Return of the Most Entertaining Man in Agriculture, Damian Mason

Most of you will remember today’s guest, Damian Mason, from Episode 04 of the Future of Agriculture Podcast. His charm, humor, and intellect makes him a truly unforgettable person. He is a well-known keynote speaker, coach, and consultant in the agriculture industry.

Damian has been in the agriculture industry for over 23 years. In today’s episode, I took the opportunity to get his views about agriculture as a business. We talk about a variety of topics from consumer perception, baby animals, and he even shares his tips to develop comedic delivery to improve your speaking skills.

“We, in the agriculture industry, need to portray a degree of professionalism and modernism in the things that we do.”

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:
Damian discusses the consumer’s outdated mindset and perception towards the agriculture industry. We talk about the importance of treating agriculture as a business. Damian emphasizes how and why the members of the agriculture industry need to be more professional and modern towards how they do business. He explains why he thinks that people in the agriculture industry should stop referring to animals as “babies” and call them as they are. We talk about agricultural entrepreneurship and the challenges that agriculture professionals face. Damian talks about his perception of the Millennial generation who are in the agriculture industry. He shares the importance of focusing on entrepreneurialism and un-commoditizing our products. Damian discusses comedic delivery and how to effectively deliver humor to your work, shows, and events.

Resources Mentioned
Reinvent with Intent Video Series by Damian Mason

Get First Access to the Farm & Rural Ag Network!

If you enjoyed this show, then you will surely love the Farm & Rural Ag Network! It is an exclusive community led by the founders of the fastest growing agriculture podcasts: the Shark Farmer Podcast, the Ontario Agcast, and yours truly – the Future of Agriculture Podcast.

Future of Agriculture: Food Waste with Jonathan Bloom

Food waste is a major issue in the United States, as well as the world. Research shows that about 97% of food wasted in the United States ends up in landfills and the less than 3% of waste that doesn’t see a landfill is being utilized in other commodities such as compost, black soldier fly larvae, and other methods. That means that approximately 30-40% of the calories available to the human population finds their way into the landfill.

Although the global economy and environment are slowly becoming more aware of the massive issue regarding food waste, it’s still one of the biggest issues plaguing, not only the agriculture industry, but also the global economic, ethical, and environment. Public speaker and author of the book, America’s Waste Land, and founder of Wasted Food joins me today to shed some light on this significant issue, share his thoughts on what the ag industry – as well as consumers in general – can do to increase awareness and make a difference in the world by finding different ways to reduce the amount of food wasted throughout the country.

 

“Food waste is simply a poor use of resources. To me, it’s being a poor steward of the Earth.” – Johnathan Bloom

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Why consumers should care about food waste and its impact on the global economics, ethics, and environmental factors.
  • About $200-Billion dollars are squandered nationally by wasted food. That’s about $2,000 per family in food not eaten.
  • The food waste data does not show the amount of ag-level waste because we don’t have a good enough handle on the amount of food being wasted at the farm level.
  • On an international scale, the amount of food wasted amounts to about $2.6-Trillion.
  • Depending on the price of harvest, farmers might not be able to justify the expenditure of time and labor to harvest certain crops such as sweet potatoes.
  • The misconception of “sell by” and expiration dates on food.
  • Where food goes when you put it in the garbage disposal.
  • How several European countries are making progress in reducing food waste.
  • How the ag-community can inspire consumers to utilize food in the best ways possible.
  • The positive changes Johnathan has seen since he began his food waste project.

 

Practical Things Consumers Can Do to Reduce Food Waste:

  • Become a smarter shopper. Plan what food you will need before going shopping.
  • Think more about portion sizes.
  • Use your freezer as a resource.
  • Stop treating “sell by” and expiration dates as the be all, end all. Instead, use them as a guide, trust your instincts and senses.

 

Connect with Johnathan Bloom: