So….I’ve been kind of busy. Okay, really busy. But I finally had the time to work on my blog today (as we got snow). Yes, real snow. Like a few inches. Anyhow I’ll address that in a separate post. This one is the first of many about my experience at the Ag Chat Collegiate Congress in Indianapolis – and can I just say – It was awesome!!! I met so many new people, made so many connections and learned a TON! So much that my brain still hurts a little bit and I haven’t gone through my notes in detail just yet. Yes I took notes. These images are a “to-do list” if you will of little pieces of information that all advocates for agriculture can implement into our lives and learn from. Like I said I haven’t really dug into everything quite yet. The more profound stuff will come a little later. I felt that this could serve as a quick and dirty outline of the basics and hopefully help out everyone else who hasn’t had the opportunity to browse their notes:)
So, in case you were wondering ‘anthropomorphism’ is defined by Google as “the attribution of human characteristics or behavior to a god, animal, or object.” At this point we were discussing this word as it related to naming a dairy heifer/cow Princess. Giving human characteristics to an animal may help consumers better relate to what great care farmers and ranchers take of them. Because seriously: if you name something I’m going to say it’s likely you have an emotional attachment. Also as soon as I receive my copy (I’m really excited for it to get here) of No More Food Fights! I’m going to read that. So…I would put that on the list as well;)
I’ll need to find myself a copy of In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto as well. Probably my own copy so I can tab/highlight like she recommended. Also on the list to read The Omnivore’s Dilemma. Mrs. Daniels has an excellent point. You need to read what other notions are out there about agriculture. This author has a very large influence and if we want to have a conversation with people (not ‘educating’ because how rude is that!) who have consumed his work we need to understand the core tenants of the arguments presented. I don’t know about you but I consume media from very anti animal agriculture outlets all the time because it is a very productive way to learn about how information is being presented.
I loved this! I’ve been talking since before I was one year old. So yeah – I love small talk. Any kind of talk really. What an easy thing to introduce into your everyday life! All it takes is spending a little bit less time on your phone out and a little bit more time socializing. Who doesn’t adore that? Yes, start with the common denominator. You don’t have to introduce yourself and blatantly incorporate agriculture. You can start by establishing a relationship (even a short lived one). I always tend to compliment someone on their outfit because if nothing else you’ve made that day more positive for that person. Then the conversation progresses from there and hopefully I can incorporate a little ag. (I guess I’ve got to work on my approach to guys because I don’t know a lot of males that dress super schnazzy).
I found this to be fantastic for two reasons. #1 being that I feel this advice gives everyone in the room the confidence that they can start a blog. Starting (for me) was the hardest part and if someone had told this to me early on it would have saved me a lot of time and self doubt. #2 Miss Truckey is encouraging diversity. This is another thing I really struggled with. I only recently decided to diversify my blog and it’s excellent because I find that I have a much easier time writing a topic.
Last but certainly not least (again) we are reminded that having a diverse audience is a must. All you have to do is click the follow button on twitter, instagram or a Facebook page and wa-lah. At the very least this begins exposing you to other questions and concerns outside the ag bubble and on most social media sites people will follow you back. So again, this is pretty quick to do! (Carrie Mess’s rule was a 2:1 ratio of non-ag to ag following/followers to shoot for)!
I hope this helps! This certainly isn’t everything I learned but it’s something that we can assimilate into our AGvocate strategy relatively soon I believe. More pictures/thoughts/musings/lessons from AgChat Collegiate Congress to come soon!
Also – I’m sorry I didn’t get pictures of all the speakers,sponsors, and break-out session masters (sorry)!
Thanks for reading!!!