To change things up, I asked Celeste Laurent, a student at Western Kentucky and a former #onthefarm guest, to guest host this week’s chat. I was unable to follow along, but it looks like Celeste did a great job and had an excellent and insightful conversation with Chris. I was very happy to see so many of our aggie colleagues promote and follow the chat. I think Celeste brought in more chat followers this week than I have in the past two months!
Enjoy this week’s chat below. I’ll be back next week as your regular host. I like the guest moderator approach every couple of weeks, to keep things fresh.
Have a great weekend,
iTweetMeat: Hey hey!
iTweetMeat: So is this like a blind date or something? Anyway. I am a professor at Penn State Univ, and I work with farmers & meat plants
iTweetMeat: So lotsa fun stuff like marketing, meat quality, HACCP training, regulatory compliance (USDA FSIS), and classroom stuff
iTweetMeat: I grew up in the Northeastern US and kindasorta came “home” after way too too many years in college in OK and KS
iTweetMeat: Um, my favorite meat is lamb chops and I am also a Leo. What else would you like to know abt me?
celestelaurent: Sounds like work keeps you pretty busy! That leads into our first question: Q1 Why did you get involved with social media?
iTweetMeat: Yes, I manage to keep very busy!
iTweetMeat: Q1 I started exploring social media when I kept hearing about it during the Iranian elections. Thought I could use it to comm, 2
iTweetMeat: Q1 Traveling around, doing talks and traditional Extension “stuff” = $$$. Reg meetings are now webinars, so why not reg work?
iTweetMeat: Q1 And everyone seems to have a ? or 2 (and mny have heated opinions, too) abt the meat we eat; hence, here I am.
celestelaurent: You mentioned the $ issue in extension work..Q2 How has PA State embraced social media? Were u encouraged to tweet, facebook,etc?
iTweetMeat: Q2 Yes, $ is an issue, just as it is anywhere. How can I make an “impact” w/o having to travel? SM is a way.
iTweetMeat: Yet assessing the level of impact is the next big challenge — enter … SurveyMonkey!
iTweetMeat: As for other PSU’rs, I have few colleagues using SM, and I suspect there is a comfort level associated w/ it
iTweetMeat: i.e., I’m about the youngest faculty member on campus (or maybe am) and social media is something I’m OK with
iTweetMeat: Added to that challenge is that I am at a “transition point” in communications. I’ve got stakeholders who like SM, E-mail, blogs
iTweetMeat: …and others who only want “snail mail” and face-to-face workshops (the latter, of course, can’t be fully replaced IMO)
iTweetMeat: Oh, and no I was no rly encouraged to Tweet or FB or anything. My dept head blogs, so I started w/ that, too. & now I do this.
celestelaurent: We’ll move on to Q3: You mentioned earlier that everyone has a question or 2 on meat. Do u get more q’s from ag ppl or consumers
iTweetMeat: Q3 — Consumers or farmers? I think it’s about a 50% farmer, 25% chef/meat purveyor/similar, and 25% consumer.
iTweetMeat: How animals are raised, food safety, meat quality — general “themes of the questions” I get
iTweetMeat: It sure is a great food value, and no, I don’t think many are up to speed on cooking roasts
iTweetMeat: But that brings up an interesting point in the observations I’ve made of “ag” and “them”
iTweetMeat: Some of today’s consumers are super-aware, and others are abysmally unaware.
iTweetMeat: And there are scads of “experts” on food circulating who may be thought of as “today’s consumer”
iTweetMeat: Is my rambling making sense? I think many have a little “gourmet” in them. Yet, fewer have practical foodsafe know how IMO
iTweetMeat: I’m just thrilled there is so much interest in food! Shows ppl really value it.
celestelaurent: Makes sense to me lol For Q5: Why don’t you share some food safety misconceptions you’ve encountered via SM
iTweetMeat: Q5 – I’m not sure where to start. The grassfed issue is of course a biggie.
iTweetMeat: The concept that, in a recall, the total lbs. of recalled meat is *not* all contaminated. Just takes 1 bug per lot.
iTweetMeat: IMO, scariest info I’ve seen r from people touting rare grassfed ground beef, the accolades of raw milk, all w/o addressing risk
iTweetMeat: The simpler the broader-reaching. It gets people talking about beef, pork. About how sausage is made. To appreciate meat as well.
iTweetMeat: Yes, the tricky question. I can only tell by bios. Wht I am noticing is how people define “ag” difftly
iTweetMeat: I think of “ag” as a food/fiber producer. Others address “ag” as a certain scale/scop of production. It’s tough
iTweetMeat: I think so … just like we teach public speaking now. It’s an important comm tool that won’t go away soon!
iTweetMeat: It’s new enough that quite possibly SM strategies/audiences could be a project in itself?
iTweetMeat: I like having the “whole animal” in the freezer — that way there’s always something different from yesterday to cook ;)
iTweetMeat: Really the flurries this morning make Hill Country seem really nice!
iTweetMeat: Thanks all! Bye!
celestelaurent: I also want to thank all the audience members who were involved today. Lots of great q’s/discussion made for great convo!