Thursday, February 18, 2010

CA Agriculture communications

Whether it's dancing raisins, happy cows, a "can a week" of almonds or eat more guacamole, California farmers have spent millions of dollars on advertising campaigns designed to get us to buy more Golden State products.

But do we really appreciate our California farmers?

We're about to find out, via a Canadian public relations and advertising firm - of all things.

The California Agriculture Communications Coalition, via the Western Growers Association, has awarded a contract (advertised as $357,500 over three years) to AdFarm to "communicate the value of the agriculture industry to the state of California and reconnect consumers to the source of their food supply."

The Coalition is the result of a realization that the state's 90 or so agricultural organizations were not together on message and that might be hurting the ag industry's ability to grow in CA. A more unified approach with consistency in communications would help, was the conclusion.

Some may argue that CA's ag industry's worst enemy right now is not a lack of consumer appreciation. I can't tell you how many times I was told in school about the greatness of CA's farm belt, and how it delivered almost all of the nation's fresh produce. No, right now the farmer's worst enemy is court-imposed restrictions on water deliveries. Did anyone see the mile after mile of dust-bowl farms in CA these past few months?

Now comes a Canadian advertising and public relations firm to help on image. It will be fun to watch. Check back for updates.


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Jay Baer said...

Hi Denis. I hope you're doing great.

Indeed, California's growers haven't been singing out of the same hymnal for a while, making this campaign necessary.

With regard to the agency that's going to do the work, they are a first-class operation. While they have Canadian operations, they also have offices in Kansas City, Fargo, Duluth, Anchorage and beyond.

Most importantly, they are ag specialists, and have worked with many similar associations, as well as major ag companies on issues of this nature.

With candor, I'm no impartial observer. AdFarm is one of my clients, and I'm looking forward to helping them make this program a huge success for California's growers. But, it can't be a siloed mission if it's going to meet the huge objectives we've set. Your ideas, and those of your readers, are VERY much welcomed.

Please feel free to ping me at any time with feedback, notions, rants, or other. @jaybaer

Many thanks for your interest in this important issue. I hope we have the opportunity to collaborate.