Meet Beef’s Latest Top of the Class

In October, I had the opportunity to spend a couple of days at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) headquarters in Denver, Colorado, for an in-depth, beef advocacy training called Top of the Class. Originally, I was actually supposed to attend last year, but with moving to Nevada they let me postpone, and I had to postpone again this past spring as I was already committed to another event. I am sure the people in those classes were great, but I am very glad I got to meet four other persons with whom I could share this great experience.

One of the requirements for Top of the Class is to complete the Master of Beef Advocacy (MBA) Training. This training does a great job going through all of the major points of the beef lifecycle, as well as sharing the facts and research. One of the greatest things, once you are a MBA grad you can download the app, which has all of the resources and materials in a handy little location.

Top of the Class helped us practice our media interview skills (always a challenge when the hard questions start coming at you), practice live cooking show skills where we prepared Cuban Crispy Shredded Beef, a planned-over. Additionally, we met with many of the great folks at the NCBA and went over our online goals, our web presence, honed in on our niches, and so much more. This was very helpful for me, as blogging has taken a back seat this year as I have been working to get my career going in Nevada. But fear not, I now have a plan, and am ready to get 2017 back on track.

img_5584
Beef, It’s what’s for dinner (and lunch)

One of my Top of the Class comrades did an excellent job of introducing our classmates (yours truly included) to his readers at Top of the Class Beef Advocacy Training. I thought it would be fun to introduce Johnny Prime (Johnny Prime Steaks) to all of you…

butcher-dark-corners
Johnny Prime

Johnny Prime, a meatatarian if there ever was one. Johnny is based in New York City, and has what can be argued is one of the greatest jobs ever… He is a steakhouse reviewer! As he takes one for the team in this terrible job (add sarcastic font here), he provides reviews on where to find a juicy, tender, and delicious piece of meat in NYC, as well as around New Jersey and the Long Island area. Additionally, Johnny provides commentary on fine eateries, cooking tips, recipes, cooking videos, general meat information, and more. And, not only does he take meat and food photography very seriously, he is funny and provides a ton of foodporn photos for your viewing pleasure. Johnny is a tremendous advocate for the beef and meat industry, and has really dedicated the time to learn about and understand the intricate details of cattle ranching and farming. I very much appreciate Johnny’s quest to learn about the facts and truth when it comes to agriculture instead of believing the buffet of lies and fearmongering out there. Thanks for being a friend of meat and agriculture Johnny Prime!

As you can see, beef lovers and advocates are on each coast and everywhere in between. I encourage you to check out and follow these fine folks, they share some great information. Finally, I would be remiss if I failed to mention that Johnny Prime did a nice feature piece on one of the beef industry’s finest, Meet your meat: Anne Burkholder (Feedyard Foodie). Anne was not only one of the instructors for our training, but is a mentor to many.

Thanks to the Beef Checkoff (cattle ranchers and farmers) for making this possible.


Dr. Lindsay can also be found on:

– Twitter/Instagram (agwithdrlindsay)
Facebook
Pinterest

 

My MBA is different than your MBA…

MBA… You probably instantly thought of a Master of Business Administration, but there is another MBA that you should take notice of, especially if you are an agriculturalist or someone who is interested in learning more about the beef industry. The Masters of Beef Advocacy – which will be the MBA I refer to in this post.

Fun fact… when I was in grad school, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) rolled out the very first ever Masters of Beef Advocacy program. As a graduate student at West Texas A&M University we completed it as a collegiate pilot program. Over the years, my email address changed, I moved around a lot, and let my MBA training fall through the cracks. Recently, I had the opportunity to complete the MBA 2.0. Yes, a complete update and remodel of the one I had seen years before. Completing the MBA 2.0 was a prerequisite for the Top of the Class Program hosted by NCBA, of which I had the honor of being a part of recently (more on that coming soon).

It was fun and informative to go through the “all things beef” modules again. I will always be a lifelong learner, so brushing up on the information and reacquainting myself with the statistics and facts was advantageous as a beef and agriculture advocate. Plus, over the years, research changes, perceptions changes, and the entire beef industry continues to change and morph. Being aware of the latest information and research being conducted is important to me.

If you are interested in learning more about the beef industry as a whole, then this training is for you. If you are interested in learning more about sustainability, then this training is for you. If you are interested in learning more about beef’s role in a healthy diet, then this training is for you. Not only can you too earn a MBA, you can do it for free! That is right, thanks to the great American cattle producers and the beef checkoff, this training is free to you. Where else can you get a MBA for free?!

As my friend, Daren Williams (NCBA Senior Executive Director, Communications) said, “Thanks for earning your MBA after already completing your PhD.”

———————————————————–

Dr. Lindsay can also be found on:

– Twitter/Instagram (agwithdrlindsay)
Facebook
Pinterest

Flight 296: The day we lost brakes

Everything we do in life has a certain amount of risk associated with it. Travel is one of those things.

Recently I was flying home after attending BloggyCon. I had had a layover in Denver, so I grabbed a late lunch and boarded the plane just like normal. It was essentially a typical non-eventful air travel day. As we pushed away from the terminal and started heading out to our runway the pilot quickly stopped the plane. I had an isle seat, but I did’t think much about it, as it is not uncommon for pilots to stop quickly. However, we did not move again. A guy sitting on the other side of the isle against the window says, we are in the grass. At first I didn’t think I heard him correctly, “In the grass?” I ask. He confirmed it. The pilot then makes an announcement that says our aircraft had lost brakes and he put the engines into emergency reverse mode, hence the quick stop.

out-the-window
We were in good hands. Photo taken by the lady with the window seat in my row. 

Since that day I have had several people ask me what the atmosphere was like on the plane. It was calm. No one screamed, no one was hurt. It didn’t take us long to figure out that we were very glad we lost brakes while still on the ground as opposed to landing in Reno. As we sat on the plane, a maintenance crew worked on the brakes below us and the pilot gave updates as he knew them. The flight crew did their best to answer questions and provide information. Everyone got to know their neighbors. There was a sense of togetherness and camaraderie with the people near me.

It was finally decided that the plane could not be towed back to the terminal at that time. They were going to evacuate the plane and bus us all back to the terminal. We unloaded the plane from the rear. They had numerous emergency service professionals to assist us as well as the flight crew and the airport representatives waiting for us. We all made our way onto buses that took us back to the terminal.

off-the-plane
First time to leave a plane by the rear exit. 
from-the-bus
Back to the airport we go.

We were greeted in the terminal with water, meal vouchers, and confirmation that we would be boarding another plane that night headed to Reno. Everyone seemed relieved we would be heading home and that we weren’t going to be staying overnight in Denver.

The second plane finally arrived, we reboarded with a new flight crew. This flight went just as planned, and we had a safe landing in Reno. Although this incident caused about a three hour delay, it is safe to say that I personally was very glad to find out we did not have brakes in Denver before we took off. I cannot even imagine what the possible outcome would have been had we discovered that when we landed in Reno. I think every person on that plane probably spent a few minutes reflecting on what is important in their life and thanked someone or something for giving us a positive outcome.

I boarded another plane this week. The reward outweighed the risk for me.

I wanted to give a shoutout to United airlines (the airline I happened to be flying during this incident), as they did an excellent job handing a volatile situation. They provided continuous updates, were friendly and helpful, sent a survey about our experience immediately, and offered points or a cash credit toward our next flight. It was a good case study in crisis communication.

Disclaimer: United Airlines has in no form or fashion compensated me for writing this post. I am just glad to be here today to share my story about United flight 296.

Have you ever had a close call when traveling?


Dr. Lindsay can also be found on:

– Twitter/Instagram (agwithdrlindsay)
Facebook
Pinterest

15 Tips from BloggyCon

I recently had the opportunity to attend my very first blogger conference. I wasn’t sure what to expect as I am not a “mommy blogger” nor do I sell stuff through my blog. Nonetheless I signed up, and off I went to Sandusky, Ohio for my first BloggyCon.

Below I wanted to share some of the best takeaways for me. These are things I hope to continue doing, start doing, or do better in the future.

  1. Podcasts – keep them between 10 and 15 minutes.
  2. Present yourself – what is your story? Everyone has a story. Be real and share your story.
  3. Take the time to work on content and schedule it, then it frees up time for other things and helps remove the guilt about not posting regularly.
  4. Perfection is the enemy of production – sometimes you just have to jump into the deep end and go with it.
  5. Don’t be afraid to go back to old blog poststhat are performing well and re-purpose them into additional or follow-ups posts, podcasts, webinars, etc.
  6. The ideal  blog post should take 7 minutes or less to read and be 500-750 words with pictures.
  7. Solve a problem for your audience. If you have a talent or skill make a video and share it. “How to” videos on YouTube are tremendously popular.
  8. Use the YouTube thumbnails when posting a video.
  9. Do not spend more than 15 to 30 minutes editing a video. Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good.
  10. You don’t have to have expensive equipment to produce a good product.
  11. Facebook Live videos are being prioritized over other content… Be there.
  12. Go live for 10-15 minutes on Facebook Live.
  13. Use good keywords and do not ever include a hashtag in a Pinterest post.
  14. Blog post titles should be around 60 characters
  15. Take advantage of internal linking. Go back through old posts and link in newer stuff (and vice versa) that you have written that relates to it.

This conference focused a lot on monetizing your blog, which is something I cannot do at this point. However, I learned a lot at BloggyCon and need to spend a day or two going through my social networks making various changes. I also met some great ladies that I look forward to keeping in touch with, and will perhaps see again someday. And to top it off, the location for this conference was fantastic.

Have you ever attended a blogging or social media conference? If so, which one was it?


Dr. Lindsay can also be found on:

– Twitter/Instagram (agwithdrlindsay)
Facebook
Pinterest

 

Gene-editing: Improved animal welfare and food security?

I recently came across an article from the Progressive Dairyman magazine called Gene-editing tool could improve animal welfare and food security written by Holly Drankhan. I would strongly encourage reading it as it talks about some emerging technology that not only can make great advancements in animal welfare, but also help potentially make cattle more efficient in milk production and rebreeding.

Additionally, CRISPR technology differs from the technology used to created genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and it is important to understand the differences.

As quoted from the article:  “In the same way that spell-check identifies and corrects single-letter errors in a word or grammar errors in a sentence, gene editing can be used to identify and change the letters that make up the genetic code within an individual,” wrote Alison Van Eenennaam, an animal genomics and biotechnology cooperative extension specialist for the University of California – Davis Department of Animal Science, in an eXtension article published in 2015.

One of the major benefits of this CRISPR technology is creating cattle without horns (polled) which greatly increases safety for other animals and people. Check out the video here:

Where else could CRISPR technology be used?

**Note: no compensation was received for this post. I just believe the information was worth sharing.


Dr. Lindsay can also be found on:

– Twitter/Instagram (agwithdrlindsay)
Facebook
Pinterest