2017 was far from a normal year. From the very start, my life got flipped-turned upside down. After being laid-off work shortly before Christmas 2016, I had to sober up (thanks Carrie for drinking with me) and evaluate what my plans would be in the world of agriculture. I had an anchor to train for my first ultramarathon. Other than that, everything was pretty much up in the air.
I bid my time with some freelance work and eventually landed on my feet with a move to the Denver area. While I wasn’t happy to leave Montana, I am thrilled to love what I do and now have a job that I love and fuels my passions. I travel and work with different people nearly every week. This certainly encourages me to work harder every day.
This also means, I was a bit more quiet on the blog as I focused on the new responsibilities. However, I still snuck a few thoughts in regarding our worlds of agriculture, beef, running, and travel.
Top 3 blog posts of 2017
Beef is a global commodity today, which means implications of demand and market price reach far beyond our own product. Having access to import and export markets in a manner that is respectful of our trading partners plays a crucial role in that process.
Some farmers and ranchers (and beef customers) have complained/questioned the need for imports and exports. In this post, I ask people to stop using fear to back their arguments and take a look at the numbers, factors and regulations governing our import/export markets for food products.
When discussing the environmental impacts and GHG emissions related to raising cattle for beef, it is easy to focus solely on emissions and negative headlines that emphasize inflated numbers.
It is inaccurate to compare livestock production from different parts of the world. While deforestation may be a concern in some countries, others may be growing their forested acres. Some countries have tighter regulations on waste management and inputs, while others may have more slacked regulations.
Remember when RAM Trucks paid tribute to farmers and ranchers with their 2013 campaign featuring Paul Harvey’s “So God Made A Farmer”? The video was a great success stirring conversation and emotion with impressive scenes from America’s heartland.
This year, Land O’Lakes brings us into 2017 with a new tribute featuring The Farmer by Amelia Barr (1831-1919). The video features scenes from many crop and livestock farms and the people on the land. The co-op shared this video as a tribute to their members and their contribution to Feeding Human Progress.
My favorites you may have missed
In December, I took a visit to a cattle feedlot and ranch in Arizona with a group of dietetic interns to learn more about what cattle eat and how they are raised. Read more here.
While it’s easy to focus on the negative headlines, I curated a list of five restaurants farmers should visit. Several are big supporters of farmers, ranchers and agriculture. For those that don’t it’s important these businesses meet the people growing their products. Read more here.
The internet can be a blessing and a curse. With so much information available, how do we know who to trust? Here’s a list of films and farmers sharing information, from the source, about our food. Read more here.
After a rocky start, I’d say I’m finding my groove once more. Along with a new start in my career, I was excited to be recognized as on of the top leaders under 40 in the cattle business. Read more here.
What were your favorite headlines and stories of 2017? Any predictions for what will take place in 2018?
I’m excited to see where the new year will take us. Stay tuned for more of my adventures to come in the worlds of beef, running and travel!
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