THE CROPPING industry has to take up the baton and write its own story or risk having it written for it according to media personality Adam Spencer.
Speaking at Grain Growers’ annual Innovation Generation conference recently, Mr Spencer said technology meant farmers were better placed than ever to share what they were doing with the broader community.
He cited the example of a Kansas farming family who prepared a short video using drone footage to highlight how their barley was produced.
“It is a beautiful piece of work, it tells the story, it shows the technology involved in growing crops while still presenting a timeless agricultural tale and it is all filmed on a relatively cheap drone, it does not require a high tech film studio to prepare.”
Mr Spencer said engaging with customers would become increasingly critical for agriculture, even in bulk commodity-based industries such as cropping.
“Increasingly we are going to be looking at tailored retail experiences, the old model of advertising on the TV to an audience of two million to perhaps get 100 potential buyers is not going to cut it.”
He said if the ag sector did not show consumers what it was doing right then other sources of information would get through to consumers.
“I had a look at the Fox Footy ad for the AFL’s rural round, and it was just appalling.
“It was full of stereotypes from Cyril Rioli playing an imaginary gum leaf to Buddy Franklin cracking a whip.
“Seeing that the young people in digital technology and IT that agriculture will need would think, ‘I don’t like chewing wheat straw so perhaps a career in ag is not for me’,” he said.
“It shows the importance of taking control of your story and telling it.
“You can hear the messages and choose to ignore them or you can accept the challenges and deal with it.”