Social Media and Agriculture

For most of the agriculture industry, winter is typically known as the season of calving, planning out next year’s harvest and purchasing equipment for the New Year. But when famers aren’t doing that, they can attend national agriculture conferences like the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Convention. This year’s annual event is being held this week in Nashville.

Even though I did not have an opportunity to attend this year’s event, I have been keeping up with the excitement on Twitter and Facebook.

There are tweets just about every minute about what is going on inside the huge trade show and meetings. It’s almost like I am attending the convention for free.

Ten years ago, farmers didn’t use tweets and social media like they do today. Smart phones and up-to-date technology make that easier.

In agriculture, farmers use social media to share what’s happening on their dairy farm. That dairy farmer could also use social media to have a conversation with a dairy farmer in New Zealand to learn about sustainable milk production.

They can also share what’s happening at local, state or national conferences. Just like the NCBA Convention. It’s a really neat tool for farmers to have.

Check out how some Virginia Farm Bureau members use social media.

Farmers aren’t the only ones in agriculture taking advantage of the social media opportunity. Agriculture communicators also use social media.

Ag communicators (just like most farmers) really enjoy using a tool like social media, because it is an easy way to interact with farmers and the public to see what they say or think about a certain issue or program.

It’s inspiring to see what’s happening on a farm in Nebraska with a picture of the horizon. It can also be interesting to see how quickly word spreads about a promotion, contest or conversation. And sometimes agriculture communicators agvocate certain issues within the agriculture industry.

Agriculturalists (farmers, communicators…etc) are usually very supportive of one another’s work online as well.

One thing is sure, social media in agriculture isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. More farmers will join Facebook and Twitter this year. Which means more conversations will talk place about the industry, food, fuel, fiber and conferences.

(Which ALSO means the NCBA Convention won’t be the only thing new I will be following on Twitter this year).

If you are interested in following farmers or what agriculture is saying on Twitter, you can follow these hashtags: #agchat, #agriculture, #harvest, #planting and even #farming. To follow the rest of the NCBA convention, follow the hashtag #ncba12.

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