• Featured Video:BASF Fermentation Education - BASF Biological Operations Manager Chris Feiden talks about fermentation technology at the St. Joseph, Missouri facility during the ASTA CSS 2014 and Seed Expo
  • ZimmNews – December 19, 2014

    ZimmNews – December 19, 2014

    2015 Beltwide Cotton Conferences - The conferences are being held in San Antonio this year and Chuck is there covering them.

    ZimmNews – December 12, 2014

    ZimmNews – December 12, 2014

    2014 CSS and Seed Expo - American Seed Trade Association's CSS 2014 and Seed Expo took place in Chicago on December 8-12.

    ZimmNews – December 5, 2014

    ZimmNews – December 5, 2014

    2014 BIVI PRRS Seminar - Swine health researchers and veterinarians came together to discuss the newest innovations to combat PRRS.

    ZimmNews – November 25, 2014

    ZimmNews – November 25, 2014

    2014 ARA Convention and Expo - The 2014 Agricultural Retailers Association Convention and Expo took place in New Orleans.

    ZimmNews – November 21, 2014

    ZimmNews – November 21, 2014

    LPC Vision 2014 - Photos from the Livestock Publications Council 2014 Vision event in Kansas City, MO.


Hello ZimmComm Fans:

There seems to be a lot of optimism in the dairy industry based on our conversations with farmers and dairy business companies during the 2011 World Dairy Expo. The ZimmComm team has been on location this week covering the show for the 7th year in a row. We’ve got a lot of photos online and more stories to come on World Dairy Diary.

We have to mention the passing of Steve Jobs which was a big shock to us and a lot of you. Farm podcasting was made possible by the iPod and Agriblogging is just more fun on a Mac. Thank you Steve. You will be missed.

Our latest ZimmPoll question, “Do you think the world population will be 10 billion by 2050?” generated some mixed results. This prediction is being used by all kinds of organizations for all kinds of purposes. But how accurate is it? Here’s what you think. 40% said Exactly or really close; 24% said How can anyone know; 19% said Much more and 17% said Much Less. A lot of people point to a United Nations report for this number. However, they readily admit that no one can know. Here’s an excerpt from the 2004 report that says it pretty clearly. You can find the latest report with revisions here (pdf).

Projections recently issued by the United Nations suggest that world population by 2050 could reach 8.9 billion, but in alternative scenarios could be as high as 10.6 billion or as low as 7.4 billion. What will population trends be like beyond 2050? No one really knows. Any demographic projections, if they go 100, 200, or 300 years into the future, are little more than guesses. Societies change considerably over hundreds of years-as one can readily see if one looks back at where the world was in 1900, or 1800, or 1700. Demographic behaviour over such long time spans, like behaviour in many spheres of life, is largely unpredictable.

Our new ZimmPoll is now live. We’re asking the question,”How do you feel about the corn supply/demand status?”It has been a tough weather year in some areas of the corn belt. After listening to an NPR show yesterday that featured as a guest Bob Dinneen, Renewable Fuels Association, it was obvious there is a lot of worry and misinformation about our corn supply in the public and on the part of activist environmental groups. What do you think? Take our poll and feel free to comment.

Here are some interviews you might have missed this week:

Opening of new John Deere Olathe Facility
Mark Clarke, General Manager, World Dairy Expo
Steve Larson, Hoard’s Dairyman and National Dairy Shrine Guest of Honor
Charlie Hammer, WI grain farmer, going full precision with Ag Leader Technology

You can find the full e-Newsletter here and subscribe here.

September Slow Down

We have gotten to take a much-needed break from the road in September and enjoy the beautiful late summer weather here in mid Missouri. It has been by far the longest stretch of decent weather we’ve had here all year – and the longest stretch of time off the road! It’s been nice to catch up and catch our breath.

Of course, Chuck did spend over a week in Ontario, Canada for the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) annual congress this month, so we weren’t TOTALLY home bound. Check out all of the more than 1,000 photos from the trip here. Thanks to Pioneer for once again sponsoring our coverage of this great event.

As for Cindy – well, I spent a grand total of one day on the road in September – and now feel fully caught up. My one trip was to Minnesota for the official opening of the REG Albert Lea biodiesel plant. We would like to sincerely thank the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council for allowing us to cover this event on their behalf and congratulate all involved for getting this plant back up and running to meet the advanced biofuel needs of the state of Minnesota and the rest of the country under the Renewable Fuels Standard.

Gearing up to get back on the road, both of us will be heading to Madison, Wisconsin the first week of October to cover the World Dairy Expo on World Dairy Diary for sixth year in a row. Thanks to our sponsors Charleston Orwig and several of their dairy clients, including Hoard’s Dairyman, Accelerated Genetics, and Dairy Business Association; as well as Alltech – a first time sponsor for this event for us, but a long time supporter.

Hope to see you all somewhere on down the agriblogging highway!


Hello ZimmComm Fans:

Chuck and Cindy are getting a break from the agriblogging highway. Chuck returned from the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists Congress in Canada and Cindy attended the Renewable Energy Group (REG) official grand opening of the REG Albert Lea biodiesel plant in Minnesota.

Well, our latest ZimmPoll about jobs didn’t excite anyone judging by the low response. With jobs all the rage in the political scene maybe you’re burned out on the word? Our latest ZimmPoll asked the question, “What is best for ag to add jobs to the economy?” 46% said All of the above to our choices. We also had 24% choose Support development of next generation biofuels; 18% choose Invest in rural economic development; 8% choose Pass FTAs with Colombia, Panama and Korea and 4% choose None of the above. We’ll see what happens as the budget and farm bill debates continue to unfold.

Our new ZimmPoll is now live. We’re asking the question, “Can farmers effectively reach out to consumers with social media?” Seems like a timely questions with Thursday’s Food Dialogues, a USFRA program driven by social media. You probably know where I come down on this. But with all our efforts, are we “reaching” consumers? What do you think? Did you participate? Did we reach the right audience?

We get asked a lot of questions about equipment to do farm podcasting with. Here’s a link to an ongoing series of posts highlighting various products you may be interested in.

Here’s some interviews and audio you might have missed this week:

REG President/COO Dan Oh at biodiesel plant grand opening
Hensall District Co-operative, Canada, CEO Earl Wagner
Richard Doyle, President, Dairy Farmers of Canada, on their supply management system
Rick Stott, Agri Beef Co, discusses USFRA Food Dialogues
Christina Connelly, MN Dept. of Ag, bioenergy programs/REG grand opening
Hans Stiekema, Ag Leader Technology, opening new markets

You can find the full e-Newsletter here and subscribe here.

ZimmComm Photo Facts

Have you ever checked out the massive quantity of photos that ZimmComm New Media has under AgWired photosets on Flickr?

2005 indy 500 paul danaWe have been uploading photos to Flickr since 2005. Our very first set is the 2005 Indy 500, which includes this photo of Chuck interviewing the late Paul Dana, who made it his mission in life to see the Indy Car Series run on ethanol and who was killed in a crash during practice for the Homestead race in 2006, the first Indy race to use 10 percent ethanol. There are 35 photos in the entire set, taken with just a regular point and shoot digital camera – before we went professional – and they have been viewed over 700 times. That’s when Chuck found out that he needed a better camera with a bigger lens to capture Indy in action!

We have a total of nearly 66,000 photos in our photostream, in more than 300 sets. All together, they have been viewed over 2.1 million times! I wish we had the time to go through categorize them all but all of the sets have tags and they are pretty easy to search. We have an open source policy for all of our content and encourage people to utilize any of our photos and audio. It’s nice when we get credit, of course, but not required! Browse through our photos next time you get a chance – you might be surprised at what you find!


Hello ZimmComm Fans:

Chuck and Cindy are almost recovered from their post Farm Progress Show Syndrome and more stories are still being worked up for ZimmComm News Network websites. After a short break Chuck gets back on the Agriblogging Highway this weekend. He’s heading to Canada for the 2011 IFAJ Congress starting with a pre-Congress Master Class program for ag journalists. Chuck will be doing a presentation about integrating new media and traditional media. Then he gets to spend a day at the Canada Outdoor Farm Show before the official Congress program starts mid week. You’ll be able to follow along all week on AgWired! And in case you’d like to follow on Twitter, the official Congress hash tag is #IFAJ.

Our latest ZimmPoll asked the question, “How many years before cellulosic ethanol matches corn ethanol production?” So what did you say? 42% said More than ten years; 23% said Five to ten years; 18% said Five years; 14% said Never and 3% said Next year. We’ve seen huge strides in the efficiency of corn ethanol production and research on the use of new feedstocks but we’re not quite there for mass quantity cellulosic production. Will we be? What do you think?

Our new ZimmPoll is now live. We’re asking the question, “Which is more important to rural America: GPS Service or Broadband Internet?” We thought it would be interesting you get your thoughts on this in light of the Lightsquared rural broadband service that seems to pose some serious problems for GPS service. Your input and thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Here are some interviews you might have missed this week:

FFA Update With DeLoss Jahnke/Geoffrey Miller
Richard Childress talks American Ethanol
USFRA announced The Food Dialogues
New AgChat Foundation board member Zack Hunnicut
Sheri Seger encourages support for NAMA ABEF
Mark Dehner, GROWMARK, supplying domestic fuel for FPS

You can find the full e-Newsletter here and subscribe here.

ZimmComm Coverage from Coast to Coast in August

August may have been our busiest month ever.

ncba cbb herman cainWe started out the month with cattle producers in the Sunshine State for the 2011 Cattle Industry Summer Conference. The joint meeting of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) and the Cattlemen’s Beef Board (CBB) in Kissimmee, Florida featured Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain. Click on the photo for a larger version and see the CISC 2011 photo album for more. Posts about the CBB side of the meeting can be found on BeefBoardMeeting.com, where meeting photos, interviews and committee reports going back to 2007 are archived.

rosy riverWe also covered the AgCareers.com 2011 Ag HR Roundtable for the first time. The event was held on the campus of Purdue University and brought together representatives from agribusiness and academia to discuss how to recruit and prepare young people for careers in agriculture.

Another stop this month was in Toledo, Ohio for the CTIC Conservation in Action Tour, which featured a full day of visits in the area around Lake Erie. This rosy sunset over the Maumee River greeted us as we returned from the tour. I really love that photo – click on it for a larger version, and check out the CTIC 2011 tour photo album for more.

sturgis 2011The Sturgis Motorcycle rally in South Dakota was definitely a first for us. Chuck covered that for the Renewable Fuels Association, which partners with the Buffalo Chip Campground to promote ethanol. See his photos from Sturgis here. No, he didn’t ride a motorcycle, but he did sleep in a very comfortable RV at the campground – it was an experience!

Without too much of a break, Chuck headed to Kansas City for the NAMA Bootcamp and then to Nashville for the AgChat Agvocacy 2.0 conference.

bivi north carolinaCindy’s next two trips sent her from coast to coast. First to the Boehringer-Ingelheim annual swine health seminar in North Carolina. This is the fourth time we have been able to attend this event and it is always fun because it is so family-oriented. They invite their producer and partner clients and their families for a really nice weekend on the Carolina coast. It was a pirate theme this year and all the kids really enjoyed it!

Five days later, Cindy headed to Seattle at the request of the United Soybean Board to attend the U.S. Soybean Export Council’s first Animal Utilization Stakeholders meeting. The weather was glorious in Seattle and as a weird coincidence, Cindy got to attend the wedding of a very close high school friend who lives in Tacoma.

jd product launchThe month wrapped up with the biggest product launch in the 174 year history of John Deere in Indianapolis. Chuck got lots of great photos and video there. The photos have already been viewed over 2600 times and the three videos collectively have been seen almost 10,000 times! Cindy attended the GROWMARK annual meeting in Chicago, then we both got together and headed to Decatur, Illinois for the 2011 Farm Progress Show. Together we uploaded over 600 photos that have been viewed more than 3,000 times.

All totaled, we traveled over 16,000 miles in August, uploaded nearly 4,000 photos, and did more than 400 posts on all four of our websites. We are definitely looking forward to a break from the road and a little R&R on Labor Day before we get back at it in September!

Burning Up the Agriblogging Highway in July

July has been hot all over the country and we have been where the action is, no matter what the weather!

infoag conference michael scuseWe saw a lot of corn in July, starting with the Conservation Technology Information Center tour of the Indian Creek Watershed in Illinois, where we learned about a farm family that caters to corn connoisseurs, among other things. Check out the photos from that tour here, and watch for coverage from the Conservation In Action Tour, sponsored by CTIC and AGROTAIN, August 9 in northwest Ohio.

The following week, Chuck drove out to York, Nebraska to check out the FMC plot tour in that area, then turned around and drove all the way to Springfield, Illinois for the 2011 InfoAg Conference, where our coverage was sponsored by AgLeader Technology on Precision Pays.

Wyffels Hybrids kept us going from sunrise to sunset on two days in July – one in Illinois and one in Iowa – for their annual Corn Strategies. Cindy went to Dixon, Illinois and Chuck attended the Malcom, Iowa event. Lots of great photos there!

We headed for the deep south at the end of the month. Cindy went to Panama City, Florida to cover the Southern Peanut Growers Conference for the fourth year in a row, while Chuck attended the Ag Media Summit in New Orleans, thanks to the sponsorship of BASF and AgHaven.

August is shaping up to be a hot one as well. Heading to Florida for the Cattle Industry Summer Conference, to Indiana for the AgCareers Ag HR Roundtable, South Dakota for the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally on behalf of the Renewable Fuels Association, Ohio for CTIC, Nashville for AgChat Agvocacy 2.0 sponsored by New Holland, Indianapolis for the John Deere product launch, Chicago for GROWMARK’s annual meeting and finishing up at Farm Progress show in Illinois.

See you down the road – stay cool!

New Holland Boomer 555 Contest Goes Social

It’s hard to believe we’re half way through July and we haven’t updated you on all the things we’ve been doing. Could be because we’ve been doing a lot. So I’ve got more updating to do. But let’s just focus on a big announcement we made last week. It’s a project we’re doing for New Holland. Here’s the details.

Announcing the New Holland Boomer™ 555 Contest. Eight lucky winners will receive a 5-year lease (150-hour per year) on a New Boomer 30 with a 240TLA Loader with the 5-year Boomer Guard5 Limited Warranty. All you have to do is fill out the entry form and describe how you would use a New Holland compact tractor.

You can find out all you need to know, including contest rules and regulations, on the Boomer555.com blog. I’m going to be the Boomer™ 555 Contest blogger throughout this campaign, updating you frequently with announcements and sharing selected entries and feedback from the folks I meet. Yes, that does mean I’ll be out and about. Follow along on Twitter and Facebook too.

Here’s a picture of a Boomer 30. Picture that on your place!

So, let’s learn more about the contest from Doran Herritt, New Holland Brand Marketing Manager. We spoke by phone. Doran says New Holland decided to conduct the Boomer™ 555 Contest as part of their introduction of the new 5 year limited warranty on the new Boomer tractors. The 5’s represent 5 months to enter to win a 5 year lease on a Boomer 30 with a five year warranty. Doran encourages you to think creatively about how you would use a Boomer tractor/loader and enter the contest. Whatever you can dream up is okay. It’s time to get Boomer555 Fever!

You can listen to my conversation with Doran here: Doran Says - Get Boomer555 Fever

If you aren’t familiar with the New Holland Boomer Tractors then learn all about them on the New Holland website.

Racing Through June

June has been racing by here at ZimmComm world headquarters – literally!

We attended two NASCAR races this month and will end the month with the Iowa Corn Indy 250. It’s all about corn farmers and ethanol at these events and even though the home-grown fuel is a little controversial even within the agriculture industry, we are proud supporters. The use of 15% ethanol by NASCAR this year has provided a new venue to get a positive message out to the public, and the Iowa Indy race is now the only Indy competition that uses ethanol that was born and raised in the USA, since Brazil provides fuel for the other races.

Chuck covered the inaugural STP 300 Nationwide Series race at the Chicagoland Speedway for the Illinois Corn Growers while I went to my very first race ever, the inaugural Sprint Cup Series STP 400 at Kansas Speedway, on behalf of the National Corn Growers and American Ethanol. Together we took about 600 photos and got comments from a number of drivers and owners about the importance of using ethanol to help the country be a little less dependent on foreign oil.

Here’s a few quotes:

Family Farmers/Marquis Energy car driver Kenny Wallace
: “E15 ethanol inside of our race cars is awesome. Ethanol is a high performance fuel, the emissions are clean, it makes horsepower, it’s good!”

Kansas race winner Brad Keselowski: “It’s just an added benefit that (ethanol) comes from America. That’s really cool.”

Team owner Roger Penske:
“The reliability is there, the fuel mileage is there and you can see the performance, so I think it’s a win-win for everyone.”

Team owner Richard Childress: “I’m a farmer myself and I understand the livelihood of farmers and I think it’s great for America what they are doing to help us not to have to depend on as much foreign energy. I hope some day we can run it all on ethanol.”

Watch for our coverage from the Iowa Speedway in Newton on June 25, sponsored by the Iowa Corn Growers.

Get The Update To The AgWired App

Hey AgWired and iPhone fans. The AgWired App has a new update. You’ll need to go ahead and get it because now you can share the stories you find on AgWired as well as our other news sites, Domestic Fuel, Precision Pays and World Dairy Diary. And if you don’t have the AgWired App on your iPhone, then now’s the time to get it!

Just go to the iTunes store and search for AgWired if you don’t have it. If you already have it, then open iTunes, click on Apps and then click on search for updates. Download and sync your iPhone and you’re done. You do update your apps frequently don’t you?

Thanks for your support!