Yesterday, I had the privilege of attending the IFCA Convention in Peoria, IL. This is the second of a long string of trade shows during this hectic pre-planting period. This means early mornings on deserted interstates, hurried meals in the car, and long days that kill your feet (rule number one of trade shows: wear comfortable shoes). During that long day yesterday, I learned a great deal about the current opinions and concerns in the agriculture industry. From precision seed treatment to cover crops, new innovations are around every corner at a trade show like this one, guaranteeing to solve any problem you may have. As I walked out of the convention center, free hats and pens in hand, I reflected a bit on the nature of agriculture, and how Agrible (and myself) fit into such a broad community.
As a general rule in life, I try to listen more than I speak. As an Agrible representative at the many trade shows across the Midwest, that rule is challenged on a regular basis. In order to show the world how awesome Morning Farm Report is, I have to tell people about its features and options. I have to explain how awesome our team is, and why they should trust us with their personal information and field data.
That said, my favorite part of trade shows is being able to listen to growers. At our basest level, Agrible aims to provide scientifically sound information to make complex, difficult agricultural decisions a little easier. In order to achieve this, we must listen to the people we hope will be able to make use of our work. Trade shows bring in all types of people, from CEO’s to hobby farmers. Standing by the booth all day, I get to learn the concerns and needs of a wide range of people in the agriculture industry. Some worry about the big picture, and hope to improve the future of food sustainability as the population increases. Others are concerned about the environment, and how global warming will impact their livelihood.
Growers are some of the most important members of our world economy. I feel humbled that I am able to work in such an important industry, and hope that I can contribute (even a just a little bit) to the future of this field. As I continue to attend trade shows in Illinois and across the Midwest, I hope to hear from an ever-wider range of growers and members of the agricultural industry. Through listening to our industry, Agrible will continue to adapt and grow to meet the diverse needs of today’s farmer. I hope to see many new faces at trade shows this season, and make lasting connections that will inform our decisions and innovations in the future.
If you see me at a trade show, come say hi, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to talk.