This past week we were fortunate to take part in two agricultural events that were different but still major. On Thursday I was invited to the Agricultural Townhall Meeting sponsored by RFD-TV and held in the Media Center of the Cattle Barn on the Iowa State Fairgrounds. Well known farm broadcaster Max Armstrong hosted the full hour event (no commercials) featuring US Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack that centered on the drought, the stalled Farm Bill, the future of agriculture for young people and food security.
Some Quotes from Sec. Vilsack:
- Congress needs to pass the Farm Bill now because growers/producers need to know where they stand going forward;
- A major part of my job is to assure trading partners that the United States is a worthy ally and we take global food security issues seriously;
- We need to get back to teaching agriculture issues in the public schools only then will a society, so distanced from the farm, begin to understand the relationship between farm and food;
- The future of agriculture in the United States is in good hands given the leadership we see in FFA and other farm directed youth groups;
- Agriculture groups need to talk to each other rather than fight among themselves. When we fight it does nothing to present a unified voice to non-farm state leaders.
Big props to RFD-TV and my old friend Patrick Gottsch (in the photo with Max and Sec. Vilsack) for doing these townhall meetings and his continued work to spread the good news of agriculture. I wish I could find the video...it was very informative!
Agriculture & Social Media
My friend Deb Brown has been a brand spokesperson for the 140 Character Conference "The State of Now" for several years. Following two successful events in Des Moines Deb felt that agriculture needed a special event centered on using social media to communicate with each other and the non-ag world. She brought together several of us for the 140 Conference AgIowa. While you'll soon be able to see the 17 presentations on UStream here is a quick video with some fun out-takes from the event.
Why share these events with you? Because they matter and it shows how committed agriculture is to reaching out to each other and the general public. Agriculture matters and everyone is...welcome.