ACDC News – Issue 21-08

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Meeting in the grove, virtually

Index Fresh, Inc., a worldwide marketer of avocados, has found that using an avocado grove as a setting for a virtual meeting breaks the ice during the time of COVID-19. It “has a completely different vibe than in a conference room,” according to a news article in The Packer.

“We can talk about new business opportunities, market trends or just simply how they’re doing because our customers are not just clients, they’re friends.”  This “meeting in the grove” concept involves videos and photos from the company’s field department, provided in a relaxed environment.


You can read the article here.

News media sparing audiences the truth

We recently added to the ACDC collection a 2016 Journalism Studies article about the role of news media in constructing perceptions of nonhumans used for food, and their treatment. Researchers Natalie Khazaal and Nuria Almiron compared 60 articles from the New York Times (United States) and El Pais (Spain) during a two-year period using a critical discourse analysis. Results showed that “while both newspapers play a major role in concealing the nonhumans’ cruel reality, a distinction can be drawn between the crude speciesism of El Pais and the camouflaged, more deceptive style of the New York Times.”


You can read the article here.

Tribal nations against “one way” communicating

A recent article in High Country News describes efforts by 11 native Alaska tribes to be involved in the conservation and management of their ancestral lands.  They submitted a July 2020 petition to the U. S. Department of Agriculture to create a “Traditional Homelands Conservation Rule.” It represents a new strategy in tribal nations’ ongoing efforts to hold the federal government to its legal responsibility to consult with them on projects that impact them.

“…these battles are not going away,” said one participant. “It is one of the divides, and there has to be bridges. … This will never change unless people are willing to talk to one another.”


You can read the article in the October 2020 issue here.

Sending useful agricultural safety signals

A new poster featuring hand signals for use around agricultural equipment has been added to this ACDC collection. The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers developed it, with 11 signals to communicate and promote farm safety.


You can read it here.

They devised a game to teach environmental decision-making

 We recently added to the ACDC collection a teaching game that can introduce the relationship between industry and the environment.  It appeared in a 1995 issue of the journal, Teaching Geography. Authors Clare Brooks and Graham James of the United Kingdom described “The Green Factory Game,” which they had found successful throughout secondary school, and beyond.

Each player in the game manages a factory producing soap powder at a site located outside a large town near a main river. The winner is judged to have succeeded in creating the most environmentally-friendly company.


You can read the four-page description and retrieve the game pieces here.

 Welcome, Rachel Riffe, to the ACDC

We are delighted to welcome Rachel Riffe as the newest graduate assistant in the Agricultural Communications Documentation Center. She is a candidate for a graduate degree in information sciences from the ISchool here at the University of Illinois.

Rachel earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from Berea College, Berea, Kentucky, where she gained experience in repair and cataloging at Hutchins Library. She has worked in billing and account setup for Aramark Financial Services.


Communicator events approaching

Uncertainties of the COVID-19 health issue continue to prompt flexible event planning. Here are plans of which we are aware, with contact information you can use for details.

September 16-18, 2021

“Back in the Saddle,” Equine Media Conference of American Horse Publications Association in Irving, Texas. Information:

September 23-25, 2021

“Risky business.” National conference of the Canadian Farm Writers Federation in Windsor, Ontario. Information:

October 4-6, 2021

“Something’s Brewing,” Fall Conference, National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) in St. Louis, Missouri.  Information:

October 8-11, 2021

ScienceWriters2021 of the National Association of Science Writers will take place as a hybrid event with an in-person gathering in Boulder, Colorado, and virtual experiences in the weeks surrounding it. Information:

October 26-28, 2021

Annual Conference of the Agricultural Relations Council in Richmond, Virginia. Information:

November 17-19, 2021

“Harvesting News for Rural America,” Convention of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB) in Kansas City, Missouri. Information:


With whom one should speak

We close this issue of ACDC News with a Danish proverb that offers advice about communicating. Julie Jensen McDonald included it in her published collection, Scandinavian Proverbs:

One should speak

little with others and

much with oneself.

Offering information and best regards

ACDC is a resource for you, so please 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 valued international collection. We welcome them in hard copy (sent to Ag Comm Documentation Center, Room 510, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801) – or in electronic format sent to