First I’d like to give a thanks and a shout-out to Ray Prock, a farmer from Central California, who’s blog Just Farmers, was just introduced to me by Mr. Prock himself.
In a short Facebook conversation with Mr. Prock, not only did he share his blog, which I enjoy, but he gave me some food for thought as we chatted specifically about social media and its purpose for agriculture. According to Prock, “If someone is not leading the thoughts we never grow” prompted my question: “Who is that then? Farm Bureau? The various commodity trade associations? Some third-party group?”
I like Prock’s answer.
“Anyone involved from farmers to the agencies. We need a complete, fundamental shift in the way we communicate as ag,” Prock said.
As an aside, the fact that Ray Prock and I can even have this conversation via a smart phone and whatever source he’s using, is a testament to the advantages and benefits of modern technology. Our common interest in agriculture introduced us (he a farmer and myself someone who appreciates and somewhat understands the entire process involved in getting food from the farm to fork). More than that, I believe that his common drive to “crowd-source the best, thought-provoking posts we can,” as he put it in one Facebook post, is evidence that some in agriculture see the need for a “fundamental shift in the way we communicate as ag” and are likewise willing to put feet and fingers to that idea.
I’ll leave you with some questions to consider. I encourage you to comment here with your own thoughts and answers to questions that I might pose, or might be prompted as you read this yourself.
- How should agriculture use social media in promoting its message?
- What are the benefits and limitations of social media in promoting agriculture?
- What else should agriculture be doing that it is not currently doing to promote itself?
- Who’s responsible for this message?
- Industry Organizations
- How should “success” be measured?
- U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance(SM) Answers Consumer Questions About Environmentally Friendly Practices Online, Encourages Further Discussions On Continuous Improvement (prnewswire.com)