ACDC News – Issue 22-04

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Journals and journal editors – guardians of the agricultural sciences

This enduringly important perspective appeared in a 1982 Rural Sociology article we added recently to the ACDC collection. Researchers William Lacy and Lawrence Busch used national surveys of agricultural journal editors and agricultural scientists in 13 disciplines to examine the role of professional journals in research. Survey results also revealed the criteria that authors and editors use in submitting and selecting articles for publication.  Findings reinforced the vital roles that editors play in the agricultural research process.


You can read the article abstract here via ResearchGate or request the full article pdf.

No Till Farmer magazine recently celebrated a “triple crown”

Mike Lessiter, president of Lessiter Media, reports that the celebration featured:

  • 60 years since the first commercial no-till plots in Kentucky
  • 50 years since his father, Frank Lessiter, launched this magazine to serve information needs of farmers who use no-till and strip-till methods
  • 30 years since the first National No-Tillage Conference

The celebration also featured a “Museum of No-Till History” –  2,064 square feet of vertical displays at the recent conference in Louisville, Kentucky.  Displays included more than 500 photos, 40 factoids and 50-plus charts and illustrations. “Once we were looking for it, every place we turned yielded more historical discoveries…”


You can view the Museum boards here.

Seven biggest ethical issues facing the agricultural industry

We are adding to the ACDC collection a 2019 posting in the ethics hotline, Ethical Advocate. It identified seven ways to improve agricultural ethics in the U.S. They addressed issues such as safety of food, treatment of animals and use of chemicals.

One cited issue involved the sharing of information – for instance, warning a fellow farmer of a parasite or pest issue versus letting a problem ruin a farm. “Sharing information to help each other helps the entire industry and the world as a whole.”


You can read the brief article here.

Required food labeling information – not all offered online

Findings of a recent research report in Public Health Nutrition indicated that information provided regularly to consumers in conventional food retail settings in the USA is not being uniformly provided online. For example, required details about nutrition and allergens were present, conspicuous and legible for an average of only 36.5% of the food and drink products surveyed. Researchers concluded that “at a minimum, the entire required nutritional information panel should be made conspicuously and immediately visible and legible under ordinary purchase conditions online.”


You can read the 2021 article here.

Update on what food is “natural”

The 2021 Food and Health Survey by the International Food Information Council (IFIC) showed that one-third of Americans regularly buy foods and beverages because they are labeled as “natural.”  Also, most Americans said they view a product labeled “all natural” as healthier than a product that is not, even if they have the same Nutrition Facts label.

“But does ‘natural’ really mean what we think it means?” IFIC explains that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “…considers ‘natural’ to mean that nothing artificial or synthetic has been put into a food that wouldn’t be expected to be there.” The definition “is not meant to address food production, processing or manufacturing methods. Nor is it indicative of a food’s nutritional or health benefit.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulates meat, poultry and egg products – but not shell eggs. It considers a natural meat and poultry product as “containing no artificial ingredient or added color and is only minimally processed.”

The IFIC report suggests to food shoppers, “…remember that there is no formal definition for the term and head for the Nutrition Facts label for details about its healthfulness. Just because it’s ‘natural’ doesn’t mean it’s healthier.”


You can read the full article here.

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.

June 6-9, 2022

“Culture, Color, Creativity” Annual Institute of the Cooperative Communicators Association (CCA) in Santa Fe, New Mexico.


June 12-14, 2022

“Reimagined: ACE all that jazz.” Annual conference of the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences (ACE) in Kansas City, Missouri. Information:

June 27-July 3, 2022

“Smarter farming and food production for green and sustainable growth.” 2022 World Congress of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) in Vingsted, Denmark. Hosted by the Danish Food and Agricultural Journalists.


July 16-20, 2022

“On point.” Agricultural Media Summit in Raleigh, North Carolina. Sponsored by the American Agricultural Editors’ Association (AAEA), Connectiv Agri-Media Committee, and Livestock Publications Council (LPC).


The most important part

We close this issue of ACDC News with a thought from Sallie Tisdale in “Travel guide to the end of life.”

“Few of us communicate really well. We think explaining ourselves is key, but listening is the most important part.”

 Offering information and best regards

ACDC is a resource for you, so please feel free to invite our help as you search for information. You are welcome 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, 510 ACES Library, 1101 S. Goodwin Avenue, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL 61801) – or in electronic format sent to

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