An Innovative Approach to Agvocating

I’ve worked in agriculture for the better part of a decade. During the past few years, our industry has made tremendous strides in our awareness of the need to better represent agriculture to the public and to help build trust.

I, like many of you, have taken part in numerous meetings designed to address the question of public trust head-on and am well-versed in the common misconceptions about our industry. And yet, it still amazes me when I encounter the stereotypes first-hand when speaking to people who aren’t familiar with agriculture. When they hear “agriculture” or “farming” they think of someone in coveralls, working the land or in the barn with dated tools and equipment.

The level of disconnect from what people expect agriculture to be – old, traditional, set in its ways – and the innovative, forward-thinking industry that we know it to be, can either be discouraging or motivating.
Personally? I choose motivating.

I think that’s part of the reason that this issue is my favourite one this year. Being innovative is nothing new to Canada’s agri-retailers; it’s what this industry is built on – finding new and improved ways to do better. Our industry faces pressure from the public to clean up our image and demonstrate our commitment to the long-term sustainability of the environment. We have the opportunity to advocate for our sector by showcasing the work, best practices, and yes, even the technology that helps us do that.

So, as you read about the practical applications of cutting-edge technology, you’ll also learn about its potential to improve the sustainability practices we currently use. By helping your grower clients identify opportunities to improve their operations, whether through autonomous equipment, drone technology, digital services or evolving regulations, you will, in turn, see a positive impact on your business.

Innovation is certainly not new to agriculture. But using our leading-edge mentality – “How can I do this better than I have before?” – to advocate for agriculture, help bridge the gap and build public trust, is new to the industry. I hope the information we share in this issue can help make even better agvocates of us all.

Wishing you all the best this holiday season,

Lyndal Nicol
Editor-in-chief

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