ACDC News – Issue 19-06

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Eight new research reports in JAC

We are pleased to call attention to eight recent articles published in the Journal of Applied Communications:

  • “ACE and research: the difference between ‘mere press agent’ and strategic partner” by Elizabeth North
  • “The effect of emphasizing credibility elements and the role of source gender on perceptions of source credibility” by Ariana Bigham, Courtney Meyers, Nan Li, and Erica Irlbeck
  • “Exploring beyond the obvious: social skills needed for agricultural communication baccalaureate graduates” by Arthur Leal, Ricky W. Telg, Joy N. Rumble, Nichole LaMee Perez Stedman, and Debbie M. Treise
  • “Should livestock images provide historical reference or modern reality? An examination of the influence of livestock communication on attitude” by Joy N. Rumble, Tiffany M. Rogers-Randolph, and Emily B. Buck
  • “Can anyone hear us? An exploration of echo chambers at a Land Grant university” by Taylor K. Ruth, Joy N. Rumble, Sebastian Galindo-Gonzalez, Hannah S. Carter, and Kevin M. Folta
  • “Diffusion of innovations and public communication campaigns: An examination of the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Program” by Henry Seeger and Robyn S. Wilson
  • “Crowdsourcing change: An analysis of Twitter discourse on food waste and reduction strategies” by Annie R. Specht and Emily B. Buck
  • “Printing and mailing for the brand: an exploratory qualitative study seeking to understand internal branding and marketing within university and extension communications services” by Anissa Zagonel, Lauri M. Baker, and Audrey E. H. King

You can read them here.

Paper – a natural fit for the circular economy model

“Paper is a natural fit for the circular economy model,” Canadian woodland owner Phil Riebel observed in a brief commentary we have added from Two Sides North America. He was referring to an emerging economy in which reuse, refurbishment, recycling, and end-of-life disposal of a product factor into manufacturing design. Reasons cited:

  • “Paper is one of the truly sustainable products.”
  • It is highly recyclable – “recycled more than any other commodity in the solid waste stream…”
  • “Much of the energy used for papermaking is renewable. Roughly two-thirds of the energy used by North American pulp and paper mills is self-generated using renewable biomass in combination with heat and power (CHP) systems.”
  • “The paper industry uses more renewable energy than any other industrial sector.”

You can read the commentary here.

Why experienced farmers may not re-engage with extension

A recent research project in Tasmania, Australia, shed light on why experienced farmers may not be inclined to re-engage with extension services. Findings of research among dairy farmers revealed a belief that extension activities were targeted to less experienced, young farmers. The belief resulted in farmers perceiving extension activities as “confronting.”

Authors also observed that “the theory of planned behaviour can be qualitatively applied to better understand farmer decision making, in this instance with respect to their initial and continued engagement with extension.”

You can learn more about this 2019 Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension article here.

What online consumers consider most important when they shop for fresh produce

Here are some key findings of recent research involving a stratified random sampling of 1,205 online shoppers in the southern region of the U. S.:

  • 81% said they believe that food labels are very important to them
  • Among those, “grown locally” is the most important label for 49% of them
  • Those for whom “organic” is the most important label constitute 15%
  • 30% consider the combination of “organic” and “grown locally” to be the most important to them

You can read this 2018 conference research paper here.

Update on how U. S. adults view genetic engineering of animals

Findings of a 2018 national survey from the Pew Research Center help identify public attitudes about use of animal biotechnology. The survey examined five different scenarios:

  • Findings showed most support for use of the technology with mosquitoes to prevent spread of disease by limiting their reproduction (70% said it is appropriate) and animals to grow organs/tissues for humans needing a transplant (57%). Both reflected public interest in benefiting human health.
  • Other uses of animal biotechnology were found less acceptable to the public. They included creation of more nutritious meat for human consumption (43% said it is appropriate), restoring an extinct animal species from a closely-related species (32%), and genetically engineering aquarium fish to glow (21%).

You can read the full report here.

Communicator events approaching

June 24-27, 2019
“Communications connections.” Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in San Antonio, Texas USA. Information:

July 27-31, 2019
“Global connections in America’s heartland.” International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress and Ag Media Summit (AMS) in Minneapolis, Minnesota USA. Joint meeting of AAEA – The Agricultural Communicators Network, Livestock Publications Council (LPC), the Connectiv Agri Media Committee, and the national Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow (ACT). Combined AMS and IFAJ information available at

September 12-13, 2019
“Extending horizons: Extension’s role in climate, rural industry, and community challenges. Conference of the Australasia Pacific Extension Network (APEN) in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. Information:

Together, we shall

We close this issue of ACDC News with a saying in Nigeria. We found it recently in a report from Vic de Jesus, 1981 president of Communicators for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) in the Philippines.

“I’ll carry you behind my back and you carry me, and together we shall ascend the mountain.”

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