Each week Chuck or Cindy interviews leaders in the agrimarketing world and talk with them about what they're doing that's new and different.


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Each week Chuck or Cindy interviews leaders in the agrimarketing world and talk with them about what they're doing that's new and different.




ZimmCast 718 - Grand Opening of the AIC

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. Last week the Ag Innovation Campus held its grand opening in Crookston, MN. You can see lots of photos and interviews in the virtual newsroom I published on AgNewsWire.com. I’m going to share some of those interviews in the episode. Before getting to the AIC facility I met a group of farmers and other ag leaders in Fargo, ND to tour the Northern Crops Institute. This is a collaborative effort among Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota to support the promotion and market development of crops grown in this four-state region and it is situated on the campus of North Dakota State University, in Fargo. I’ll share my interview with Mark Jirik, Director, who will describe the unique work they do there. After that we got on a bus and traveled to the Riverview Waukon Dairy where I met David Yost who will provide an overview of the large and very impressive facility they have built. Then we moved on to Crookston, MN to the Ag Innovation Campus. We had presentations from a variety of people who have played a part in the success of reaching phase one of the facility and a ribbon cutting. I talked with several leaders about the work that the AIC will do to deliver crops and processing technologies from bench top to commercialization. Think of the term, crush facility, and you’ll hear more about this staring with Tom Slunecka, Acting AIC CEO. Next we’ll hear from Mike Skaug, AIC Board Member. Finally in this episode you can hear from the AIC Plant Manger, Kent Meyers. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 717 - Syngenta at #FPS23

Interviews with Kramer Farney, Golden Harvest head of marketing; NASCAR Driver Sammy Smith; Mary Kay Thatcher, senior lead for federal government relations at Syngenta; Eric Boeck, Regional Director North America for Syngenta Seeds; Sustainable Oils President Mike Karst; Matt Dolch, NK Corn Product Manager, and Jared Benson, NK Soybean Product Manager


ZimmCast 716 - A New Podcast and New Presidents

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. I’m going to start with an excerpt of the brand new podcast, The Heart of Rural America, hosted by Amanda Radke. She’s a South Dakota cattle rancher, wife, mama, author, and motivational speaker. Amanda also wrote for AgWired back in 2010! I highly recommend you subscribe to and listen to her new podcast. We are very proud of Amanda and have enjoyed watching her family and career grow over the years. Next in the program are interviews with the new presidents of the Agricultural Communicators Network and the Livestock Publications Council. The gavel was passed for both organizations during the Ag Media Summit. First up is Martha Mintz, Corral Creek Communications. Next, you can listen to my interview with Katrina Huffstutler, Grant Company LLC. That's the ZimmCast for this week. Thank you for listening and I hope you enjoyed it.


ZimmCast 715 - Preview of 2023 Ag Media Summit

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman After getting a break from the agriblogging highway the ZimmComm Team has used the time for some needed work on headquarters. Fortunately it has been indoors as the temperatures are high and a lot of rain has fallen until the last couple days. So now it’s time to look ahead to some events we will be attending. The first one is the 2023 Tech Hub Live with a preview from Scott Cogdill, Proagrica. This is the third annual event and will have over 88 speakers, 19 tech talks, 19 fireside chats, 17 roundtable discussion groups and 10 breakout sessions. You can see who is exhibiting here. Following Tech Hub Live I will be at the Southern Peanut Growers Conference in Destin, FL. I’ll be creating content for the conference blog and there will be lots of photos and interviews. Then it’s on to the 2023 Ag Media Summit in Palm Springs, CA, and the Renaissance Palm Springs Hotel. I haven’t been able to attend them all but most of them. The AMS started in 1999. To get a preview of this year’s event I spoke with Shelia Grobosky, Public Relations Coordinator at BioZyme Inc. who is the AMS Steering Committee Chair and a member of the Livestock Publications Council. She says there are a number of things that have been changed in the schedule but the basics all all there. It’s not too late to register. You can do that here. Hope you are staying cool if you are in an area with significant heat but, hey, it is summer. So that’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 714 - Margy Eckelkamp, Farm Journal



ZimmCast 713 - The Work of AgGateway

Hello to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. In this episode I will be sharing a couple of interviews from the AgGateway Mid-Year Meeting. One of those is with Andres Ferrerya, Data Asset Manager for Syngenta Digital. The kind of work that he does and the work of AgGateway can get pretty technical but he describes it in a clear way to understand, in my opinion. Then you can hear Jeremy Wilson, AgGateway’s Executive VP/COO, as he talks about the various working groups in AgGateway and what they are doing. The work that AgGateway is doing is really vital for farmers, retailers and other companies that are seeking standards of various kinds to make the process of digital information quicker, simpler and more useful. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 712 - 2023 IFAJ Congress Preview

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. It is going to be a very active June into July for ZimmComm, with a variety of on-location events. One of those is the annual IFAJ World Congress which is being held this year in Alberta, Canada. I will be there and I believe this will be my 10th IFAJ Congress. These events are very well planned and packed with business, professional development and farm tours. To get a preview of the activities I spoke with Jessika Guse, co-chair of the planning committee. I’ll be taking a lot of photos throughout the Congress and hope to have time and internet to get them up asap. I’ll be doing the same immediately after the Congress when I stay in Calgary for the Alltech ONE World Tour stop. That’s the ZimmCast for now. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 711 - Water for Food Global Conference

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I'm Cindy Zimmerman This episode comes to you from the 2023 Water for Food Global Conference, which was held May 8-11 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This was the 10th Water for Food Conference but the first time it’s been held since 2019, thanks to COVID. The Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute (DWFI) at the University of Nebraska works to address the global challenge of achieving food security with less stress on water resources through water management in agricultural and food systems and the conference brings together experts and thought leaders from around the world to help find solutions to water and food security challenges. In this episode, you will hear from DWFI executive director Peter McCornick, DWFI board member Felicia Marcus, Colorado farmer and LRE Water consultant Dick Wolfe, Nebraska farmer Debbie Borg, and Louise Mabulo, founder of The Cacao Project. We hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 710 - Preview of the 2023 Agri-Marketing Conference

The 2023 Agri-Marketing Conference is approaching fast. You can still register right here. And in this episode you can hear a comprehensive preview of the conference from Vice Chair, Lori Kruger, Signal Theory. In 2004 Cindy and I announced the start of ZimmComm at the conference which means we’re starting our 20th year!! It was one of the best decisions we have made and we will be exhibiting once again in the Connection Point. I’ll be easy to find and hope you will stop by. I’ll have the Golden ZimmComm Microphone ready to conduct interviews. I’d like you to tell me a little about your what you do, your company and your products/services. Simple. No wrong answers. You can also enter our booth drawing which is a Supernote A6 X bundle that includes pen and folio. It is a dedicated digital note taking device! I want to thank Lori and all the committee members and staff for putting together a fantastic looking conference agenda. I hope to see you there. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 709 - Captive Insurance Programs

In this episode we’re going to continue learning about newer options for insurance programs for farmers. And in the program we’re going to learn about a relatively new way for farmers, ag processors and cooperatives to have more control over their own risk protection. In particular, the subject will be Captive Insurance Programs. I had a conversation with John Capasso, founder and current President & Chief Executive Officer of Captive Planning Associates, LLC. John has over 20 years of insurance experience. He walks us through the definition of captive programs and answers questions farmers have about creating them and making the best use of this risk tool. So, listen in as John provides us with the “Captivating Possibilities” of Captive Insurance Programs. That's the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thanks for listening.


ZimmCast 708 - New at Commodity Classic

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. ZimmComm is celebrating 19 years in business this month! In this episode you'll hear about some new products, because that's what Classic is all about. I want to say a special thank you to Syngenta and Phospholutions for making my attendance possible. First you’ll hear my conversation with Hunter Swisher, CEO/Founder, Phospholutions. This was the companies public announcement of their product RhizoSorb, an entirely new phosphate fertilizer technology. Hunter will explain. Moving over to Syngenta, a key announcement was a new way to buy seed. They call it Seed Simplified and it is starting with their GHX by Golden Harvest brand to farmers in Iowa and Illinois. Golden Harvest’s Morgan Dugan explains it. That’s all for the ZimmCast this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 707 - Ready for Spring

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m going to focus on a couple of different conferences in this episode. First I’m going to share an interview Cindy did with Erik Huschitt, Badger State Ethanol, who is the Chair for the Renewable Fuels Association. This was during the National Ethanol Conference last week. We’ve been working on the annual conference since 2007. Besides Erik’s interview we have lots of content on our AgNewsWire.com virtual ag newsroom. It might be the most we’ve ever produced at this conference. In Cindy’s interview you’ll hear Erik talk about what a great conference it was this year. Next I’m going to let you hear what Sara Wyant, Agri-Pulse, says about the upcoming Agri-Pulse Ag and Food Policy Summit, which is will place in The National Press Club in Washington, DC. With spring almost here it is time for National Ag Day with activities in Washington, DC the day following the Agri-Pulse event. National Agriculture Day is celebrating 50 years. Amy Bradford, GROWMARK, is chair of the event this year with is hosted by the Agriculture Council of America. Amy talks us through the planned activities. So, that’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 706 - From Cattle to CIRB

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. This week’s program will start with cattle and end with CIRB. By that I mean a couple of my interviews from the Cattle Industry Convention & NCBA Trade Show and then from the Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau Annual Meeting. First up is Colin Woodall, CEO, NCBA, who provides an overview of the organization and how the 2023 convention and trade show has performed. Following Colin is Kent Bacus, Executive Director, Government Affairs, for NCBA who talks about export markets. Moving on to the CIRB Annual Meeting you will hear from Jim Wiesemeyer, Farm Journal policy analyst, who provided his annual political update. And then Michael Torrey, Executive Director, CIRB, provides a wrap-up on this year’s event. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 705 - Riding with Can-Am

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. In the middle of the winter meetings I’m going to take a break share a conversation with JJ Rivet, Can-Am. Can-Am provided the members of the Crystal Pig Hunt Club to try out an HD-10 Unlimited model during the early part of the deer hunting season in Georgia, which was very successful. I just talk with JJ a few weeks ago and asked him to talk about the product we worked with. It was a closed cab with heat and air and we filled up feeders, dropped people off at their stands and brought our harvest back to the camp. In our conversation you'll hear about the specifications of this model and a little bit about its history. The cab is a game changer and you'll hear about various add-ons and options to fit your woods, farm and work needs We hope to work with Can-Am again in the future because it sure helped us be more productinve in the field. That's the ZimmCast for now. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 704 - From Beltwide to VISION

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. I’m a little behind on this latest episode. The holidays and early conferences have kept Cindy and I very busy. This includes traveling to see family and that includes a beautiful wedding for one of our nieces. We are very blessed to be able to see so many of our family members. We’re scattered all over the place so it’s not easy. But worth it. So, I’m going to include a few of the interviews I conducted in the last two weeks. Let’s start with the Beltwide Cotton Conferences in New Orleans. These interviews are from the Cotton Sustainability Conference. First up will be Dr. Gary Adams, President and CEO, National Cotton Council, talking about the U. S. Cotton Trust Protocol. Following Gary will be Dr. Jesse Daystar, Chief Sustainability Officer, Cotton Incorporated, talking about Climate Smart Cotton. There are a quite a few more interviews and other audio in the Beltwide Cotton Conferences virtual ag newsroom on AgNewsWire.com. That includes regulatory updates, cotton policy updates and a world cotton outlook. Now let’s move to this week’s VISION Conference conducted by Meister Media and held in Glendale, AZ. It is the 6th year for this conference. First up is Joe Monahan, President and COO of Meister Media. He talks about the conference theme of Harnessing the Power of Agriculture 4.0. Then you’ll hear Rob Dongoski, Global Food & Agribusiness Leader, Ernst & Young. He has some great information about how technology will enable the future food system from producers to consumers. Coming up next on the ZimmComm schedule is the Clean Fuels Conference followed by the annual meeting of the Crop Insurance and Reinsurance Bureau. I’m looking forward to them! I’d also like to remind you that you can subscribe, not only to the ZimmCast, but the ZimmComm Golden Mic Audio Podcast. That podcast contains all interviews or other audio files that we publish. You can find it in all the major podcast directories. Just search for ZimmComm Golden Mic Audio Podcast. So, that’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thanks for listening.


ZimmCast 703 - Introducing AgriCap Group, LLC

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. As you know, our theme here on AgWired has always been, “What’s new in the world of agribusiness.” And in this program we’re going to learn about a relatively new way for farmers, ag processors and cooperatives to have more control over their own risk protection. There is more to the story in my interview with Dennis Daggett, a partner with AgriCap Group, LLC out of Minnesota. We had a great conversation during the recent AgGateway Annual Meeting. Our team has cultivated relationships with top insurance companies to develop unique and cost-effective insurance solutions. By bringing together top re-insurers, captive insurance managers, and service providers we help farmers, ag processors and cooperatives retain the investment and tax advantages being lost to commercial insurance companies. We are experienced professionals with a ‘hands-on’ approach to Ag Risk Management and Protection. Our reinsurers have earned an ‘Excellent’ rating from A.M. Best for over 50 years. This rating proves that they have the financial strength to pay your claims and give you peace of mind when you need it most. So, listen in as Dennis tells us all about AgriCap and how farmers and their ag partners can find out more. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 702 - Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa

During the 2022 ASTA CSS & Seed Expo I met one of the international attendees yesterday who lives in Kenya and is Head of Seed Research & Systems Development for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). She has a great story and I think you’ll enjoy learning about farming challenges in the eleven country area that the organization works in. I think it is always fascinating to learn more about agriculture in other countries. That’s why I’ve supported the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists. They have an annual meeting in a different member country each year. By attending many of them I have been able to travel in Japan, New Zealand, Argentina, Canada, Switzerland and many others. You can learn more about IFAJ at IFAJ.org. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 701 - A View from the Top with Syngenta Crop Protection

In this episode I’m going to share some interview with Syngenta leadership from the company’s crop protection media summit. So, let’s learn what’s new with Syngenta Crop Protection. First I’ll share my conversation with Vern Hawkins, President, Syngenta Crop Protection, LLC, followed by Jeff Cecil, Head of North America Crop Protection Marketing. Vern will discuss a “View from the Top.” Next we have Jeff who will discuss “Syngenta CP Innovation and Economics of Agronomics.” For more interviews from the Syngenta Media Summit go to AgNewsWire.com and click on the virtual newsroom where you will also find lots of photos from the event in Louisiana. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoyed it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 700 - NAMA Fall Conference & Export Exchange

Hello and welcome to the ZimmCast. I’m Chuck Zimmerman. We’re reached another milestone. This is episode 700 of the podcast that started back at the beginning of 2005. You can find them all on AgWired.com by searching the category link for the ZimmCast. This week I’m going to share a few interviews from my week last week in Minneapolis. First was the NAMA Fall Conference followed by the Export Exchange. First we’ll hear from Matt Coniglio, Farm Progress, and chair of the NAMA Foundation. Next up is Brian Torrey, John Deere, who is the chair for the 2023 Agri-Marketing Conference which will take place in St. Louis next April. He provides a little look ahead for that. After the NAMA Fall Conference I changed hotels for the Export Exchange which is an opportunity for foreign grain buyers to come visit with farmers, agribusiness companies and the U.S. Grains Council, Renewable Fuels Association and Growth Energy, who partner to put the even on. First up is Ryan LeGrand, U.S. Grains Council President/CEO. Next Ann Lewis of the RFA provides current numbers for the exports of U.S. ethanol and dried distillers grains. It was a busy week in Minneapolis but later this week I’ll be in the Georgia woods hunting deer. Looking forward to a little R&R. That’s the ZimmCast for this week. I hope you enjoy it and thank you for listening.


ZimmCast 699 - Preview of the 2022 NAMA Fall Conference

This week’s program will be a preview interview on the NAMA Fall Conference coming up very soon in Minneapolis. To get the details I talked with GROWMARK’s Chris Grogan who is the vice chair of the NAMA committee that has worked with staff to plan this year’s event. We’ll talk about the program and speakers, registration, the hotel and more. The conference will be held at the Loews in Minneapolis on October 10-12. You can find the link to register on the NAMA website if you haven’t already done so.