You’re Invited to Commodity Classic March 2nd

Written by NAMA on Tuesday, February 21, 2012 , 3:36 am

Join NAMA and  AAEA for a joint reception on March 2nd at Commodity Classic located at  Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville.   No cost and no registration necessary.  For details visit

Hosted by American Agricultural Editors’ Association and National Agri-Marketing Association….with sponsorship help from BASF, NAMA’s Midsouth chapter, Great Plains and Rocky Mountain Chapters.

Becherer Named 2012 Agribusiness Leader of the Year

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:34 am

The National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) has named John Becherer, CEO of the United Soybean Board, as the 2012 Agribusiness Leader of the Year. This award, which is NAMA’s highest honor, will be presented at the Opening General Session of the 2012 Agri-Marketing Conference, “Acres of Innovation,” April 19, 2012, in Kansas City, Missouri.

The award honors outstanding leaders in agribusiness, education, government service or other agribusiness-related areas who exemplify excellence in agribusiness by their significant contributions to the industry.

For nearly 18 years, John Becherer has guided the Board of more than 60 volunteer U.S. soybean farmer-directors through times of growth and change as it evolved from its inception in 1991 to 2011, when the Board marked its 20th anniversary. Soybeans have seen a 140% increase in global demand for the two decades of USB’s existence and Becherer helped build this growth at a pace that has outperformed global demand for any other major U.S. row crop. For example, soybean prices set an all-time record in 2008 and have remained strong ever since, despite the downturn in some of the other U.S. agricultural sectors and the general global economy.

But Becherer isn’t allowing USB and the rest of the U.S. soy industry to sit back and coast.. In 2011 alone, he helped USB farmer-leaders:

  • create a new long-range strategic plan;
  • develop a new effort that could redefine how the marketplace determines the value of U.S. soy and reward U.S. soybean farmers for quality; and
  • direct the first formal, independent, third-party assessment of USB’s governance and structure in nearly 20 years.


In 2010, Becherer engaged private industry to more effectively build confidence among consumers about today’s agriculture and our food supply by helping to create the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA), which has grown to include more than  70 major U.S. farm and commodity organizations from just 20 when it began.

Becherer has also helped to narrow USB’s focus, encouraging the board to reduce the number of its priority issues from five down to two through a board-wide, comparative voting process. This has increased USB’s effectiveness in addressing short-term opportunities or challenges that merit immediate attention by the soybean checkoff, such as supporting the leading user of U.S. soy, the animal agriculture sector, and conducting activities that will increase public and private investment to improve U.S. transportation infrastructure.

Becherer also helped identify the need for QUALISOY, a unique U.S. soybean-industry organization consisting of farmer-leaders of the soybean checkoff and associations, as well as representatives from food- and feed-industry organizations, researchers and others. Their mission is to facilitate the development of new U.S. soybean varieties with enhanced traits. QUALISOY, which Becherer also helps lead, brings competing interests to the same table and develops a consensus on how the U.S. soy industry can meet future food, feed and fuel needs.

The soybean checkoff is the leading farmer-funded soy research and promotion program in the world and provides U.S. soybean farmers with a competitive advantage in an increasingly competitive international agricultural sector.

In addition to helping create the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance, Becherer took a leading role in creating the Commodity Checkoff Roundtable. It serves as an opportunity for non-farmer/producer leaders of U.S. commodity checkoffs to share successes and improve the effectiveness of all farmer-funded research and promotion programs.

Becherer is also a long-time member of such prominent U.S. agricultural industry organizations as the National Agri-Marketing Association, the National Association of Farm Broadcasting, and the St. Louis Agribusiness Club. Becherer received the 2009 Agribusiness Leader of the Year Award from the St. Louis club.

Congratulations to John and the U.S. soybean industry for this significant accomplishment.

NAMA Honors Guse as 2012 NAMA Marketer of the Year

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:33 am

Greg Guse, President, Paulsen Marketing, has been named the 2012 NAMA Marketer of the Year. The NAMA Marketer award will be presented during the Second General Session of the 2012 Agri-Marketing Conference, “Acres of Innovation” on Thursday, April 19 at 11:00 a.m. in Kansas City, Missouri and is sponsored by Agri Marketing magazine.

Greg Guse’s many accomplishments span a 35-year career that has always focused on agriculture; from his early days as a communications assistant at GTA Feeds, as a young account guy at Martin Williams, starting his own agency, Gregory Scott Communications, and his fortuitous arrival at Paulsen Marketing in 1995.

Beginning in 2009, Guse’s leadership steered Paulsen to move beyond traditional agency roles to create a consistent ag marketing research program. The result is a number of thought papers and articles released to the industry including: interviews with producers, research in farm communities and outreach to ag companies. These papers generate significant discussion within the industry including numerous requests to present research findings to industry associations, clients and more.

Guse’s leadership style is much like agriculture itself—take care of the soil, plant the seeds, weather the storms and reap what you sow. And above all, never stop learning.

He recently led an initiative to build relationships with local farmers to give feedback and input—leading to the Paulsen Ag Advisory Panel. This gives staff the opportunity to talk directly to the customers that buy their client’s products.

Guse contributes to overall marketing and sales success first as the agency leader and second as a hands-on account supervisor on key accounts.    

Guse began his NAMA career in 1978, serving in many capacities over the years, and further supporting the organization with Paulsen as a Sustaining Partner. Most recently he served as Best of NAMA Vice Chairman in 2009 and Best of NAMA Chairman in 2010.

He is also committed to Paulsen staff involvement with NAMA. At the regional NAMA awards show in 2011, Greg chartered a bus to take over half of the Paulsen staff to the awards ceremony. Greg also encouraged Paulsen’s attainment of Sustaining Partner for the first time in the agency’s 60-year history.

Greg believes in the power of youth and innovation to keep agri-marketing fresh and relevant. He believes in giving opportunities to and nurturing people. And he believes in the promise of NAMA to identify and empower tomorrow’s agri-marketing leaders—not just through seminars, but through real-world, hands-on examples. Greg truly lives the NAMA ideals every day.

Thank You to 2012 Team NAMA Reviewers

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:32 am

Team NAMA offers student chapters an opportunity for a professional review of their Executive Summary prior to the submission deadline.  This year 14 student chapter teams took advantage of this opportunity.  NAMA and the student chapters thank the following professionals who volunteered their time to review the plans and provide feedback to the teams.

Jim Bansen, CNH

Sally Behringer, Blasdel Cleaver Schwalbe

Meg Brodman, archer>malmo

Tiffany Bronson, AdFarm

Jodi Carreon, Rhea + Kaiser

Laura Cunningham, Latham Hi-Tech Seeds

Dave Furbeck, Great Salt Lake Minerals Corp.

Channing Gardiner, Farm Journal Media

Steve Grana, Novus International, Inc.

Stephanie Hoult, Broadhead

Josh Hushon, Bader Rutter & Associates

Justin Johnson, MANA Crop Protection

Sharon Larson, Martin | Williams

Rebekah McCurdy, Pioneer Hi-Bred

Brian Rund, Nufarm Americas, Inc.

 And special thanks to Janelle Buxton, Pioneer Hi-Bred and a member of the NAMA Careers Committee, for coordinating the project!

Agri-Marketing Conference Workshops Spotlight

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:31 am

Pre-Conference Workshop:  Sales and Marketing Are Two Peas in a Pod Wednesday, April 18 ~ 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

As a subset of marketing promotion, sales plays an important role in many organizations.  Yet, sometimes there is a disconnect between a company’s marketing efforts and sales efforts.  Often promotional planning addresses advertising and branding separately from the company’s personal interactions with customers in the field.  Salespeople often come from independent stock and get so focused on products and customers that they don’t take full advantage of the marketing tools available to them.  In this interactive session, we’ll discuss how selling and marketing can co-exist as an integrated effort with some simple twists of commonly used tools.

Scott Downey, Purdue University

Scott Downey teaches courses in selling and sales management in the Department of Agricultural Economics. He joined Purdue University on a full time basis in 2000 after spending 15 years in the financial services industry and eight years concurrently teaching undergraduate and graduate level marketing and finance courses, at Purdue and Indiana Wesleyan Universities.

Scott is also associate director for the Center for Food and Agricultural Business. He teaches in many of the Center’s programs and represents the Center at other events within industry. He is a frequent speaker and consultant for agribusiness industry sales teams on professional development topics like building value, branding in the field, field marketing, key account management, and leadership.

Senior Management Workshop: Next-Gen Profits
Thursday, April 19 ~ 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Peter Sheahan

Generation Y represents one the most lucrative opportunities open to business today. Whether you want to unleash their creativity at work, get your share of the $200bn plus they spend annually, or align yourself to profit from the $17.8 trillion they will inherit, you will need a fresh approach to branding, sales and leadership.

Human needs never change, but our definitions of whether those needs are being met change dramatically based on how we were brought up. If you are going to attract and retain the new generation as customers, members and staff, you will need to understand their new perspectives and definitions.

Based on the research presented in the international best seller Generation Y, this very funny and extremely insightful session will:

– Give you insight into the REAL differences between generations.
– Offer strategies for exploiting this new market opportunity.
– Identify emerging trends associated with this generation which are impacting your broader target markets.
– Show you how successful organizations have adapted their leadership and management styles to this new employee group.
– Outline specific strategies for attracting and engaging Gen Y as customers and/or staff.
– Present case studies from around the world of organizations who have profitably engaged this new generation.
– Move beyond “technology” hype and focus on opportunities which align with your desired culture and business model

AMC Sponsorships Still Available

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:20 am

Sponsorships are available for the 2012 Agri-Marketing Conference. Get your company noticed!  Companies with marketing budgets of all sizes can participate. The higher your support, the more benefits you’ll receive….Sustaining Partner, Platinum, Gold, Silver or Bronze. In addition, you can get more company visibility by claiming one or more of the sponsorship opportunities. These opportunities are available on a first come, first serve basis, with first right given to last year’s sponsor.

Please review the benefits and opportunities of sponsorship at the 2012 Agri-Marketing Conference and confirm your interest to Jenny Pickett at (913) 491-6500 or email to or fill out the online sponsorship form at In-kind sponsorships, e.g., printing, can be considered.

AMC Trade Show Booths Available – Hurry!

Written by NAMA on Monday, February 20, 2012 , 3:19 am

Meet your customers in The Connection Point at the Agri-Marketing Conference in Kansas City.  If your company has products and services to put before decision-makers in the ag marketplace, NAMA’s Connection Point is for you.  Over 90% of the exhibitors return each year!

With nearly 1,200 professionals in attendance, there’s no better way to get noticed. Influencers and decision-makers will take note when you purchase booth space on this trade show floor. Lunch and refreshment breaks are scheduled to maximize traffic and draw the clients and customers you want to meet!

The Connection Point will be open Wednesday, April 18 from 6:00–7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 19 from 12:30–2:00 p.m., 3:00–4:00 p.m. and 5:00–7:00 p.m.

Booth space price (10’ x 10’ space) is $475 (includes one exhibit hall only pass). Trade in your exhibit hall only pass and receive $100 off one full conference registration. Additional exhibit hall only passes are $250 with a maximum of two per booth space.

Multiple space discount:
2 spaces = 10% off of the single booth price for a total of $855
3 spaces = 15% off of the single booth price for a total of $1,210
4 spaces = 20% off of the single booth price for a total of $1,520
5 or more spaces—call for price

Exhibitor Fees Include:
• One 10’ x 10’ exhibit space
• Uniform back wall and side rails (both draped)
• One-line company identification sign

To sign up for a booth in the Connection Point, visit or contact Jan Cichello at mailto:janc@nama.orgor call 913-491-6500.

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