ACDC News – Issue 19-02

When food recalls hit, tell news media what affected consumers can do

That message came through in an analysis of how selected national media covered 72 food recall notifications from the U. S. Food and Drug Administration during 2013.  Researchers concluded: “From a practical standpoint, instructional messaging appears to be the most effective strategy in a food recall crisis if the company seeks to gain positive newspaper coverage. This may sound intuitive at first, but many companies are not currently practicing it.”

This analysis was reported in the September 2017 issue of Newspaper Research Journal.

You can read the article here.

What interests consumers most about modern pig production: Environmental impact? Safety? Health? Animal welfare? 

Findings from recent research among consumers in both Germany and Poland indicated that they assigned greater importance to health and safety aspects than to animal welfare and environmental impact. Authors of the 2018 Meat Science article observed that currently the major distinction in the pork market is between conventional and organic production, which is mainly defined in terms of environmental and animal welfare benefits. “The present data therefore suggest that there can be room in the market for a different positioning based on production characteristics related to health and safety.”

You can read the article here.

Food Trendtellers Council sees trends to watch during 2019

A team of Trendtellers from Tyson Foods has identified six food trends to watch during the year ahead:

  • Personalized foods to promote health and beauty
  • Transparent food takes hold
  • More protein in more forms
  • The power of smart technology and food
  • Food as a form of self-expression
  • Fusion of global cuisines at home

Communicators have a central role in all of them.  You can learn more here

Some bees aren’t so busy as foragers (and communicators)

We often refer to being busy as a bee. However, the ACDC collection now contains a research report in Animal Behavior revealing “extreme inter-individual variation and plasticity in honeybee foraging activity levels. Automated monitoring showed that foraging activity is flexibly adjusted during a bee’s lifetime. “…elitism does not involve a distinct subclass of foragers.”

You can learn more about the article here.

Welcoming Emily and Courtney

We welcome two new graduate assistants in the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center.

Emily Benton is a first-year graduate student in Library and Information Sciences at the iSchool. She has a BA in History and a minor in Plant Sciences from the University of Missouri. In addition to her work with the ACDC, Emily has been working as a quarter-time graduate assistant in Funk ACES Library since August.  Emily has had internships in the Missouri State Archives and the Supreme Court of Missouri Library.

Courtney Smith is a first-year graduate student in Library and Information Sciences at the iSchool.  Her focus lies in special collections and archives, and she is especially interested in metadata, outreach, and providing better access to users.  In addition to her work with the ACDC, Courtney holds graduate hourly appointments in the Library’s Illinois History and Lincoln Collections and in the Facilities Information Resources Department of the University Facilities and Services unit.  She has undergraduate degrees in Political Science and History from Michigan State University. While at MSU, Courtney was a student assistant in several library units, including Special Collections and Area Studies.”

Communicator events approaching

March 4, 2019

Deadline for poster abstracts for the 2019 Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) annual meeting, June 22-27, in San Antonio, Texas USA.

Information:  Prof. Jessica Holt

April 1-4, 2019

“Linking, innovating, motivation, and engaging for resilient agricultural systems”

Conference of the Association for International Agricultural and Extension Educators (AIAEE) in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago.


April 10-12, 2019

“Onward Upward.” 2019 Agri-Marketing Conference sponsored by the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in Kansas City, Missouri USA.


June 2-5, 2019

“Southern accent on fresh ideas.” Annual institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Savannah, Georgia USA.



Oh, the agony of broken grammar rules

Thanks to Walter Rockwood who in 1984 alerted his fellow agricultural writers/editors to this irreverent view of a sacred grammar rule – that sentences should not end with prepositions.

He explained, “The rule was invented by critic and poet John Dryden (1621-1700), who reasoned the preposito in Latin means something that ‘comes before’ and that prepositions in Latin never appear at the end of a sentence.” A contrarian view is that the rules of Latin do not always apply to English and that some great writers have ended sentences with prepositions.

He cited an agricultural writing example: “Soil – good to be born on, good to live on, good to die for, and good to be buried in. “(Bacon)

Best wishes and good searching

Please pass along your reactions, suggestions, and ideas. Feel free to invite our help as you search for information. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @ACDCUIUC. And please suggest (or send) agricultural communications documents we might add to this unique and valuable international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, Urbana, IL 61801) or in electronic format sent to

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