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Happy 3rd Anniversary!

Although it seems like yesterday, three years ago today we launched the AGCO Blog. We’d like to give a big thanks to our readers and contributors; we appreciate you continuing to read, respond and engage on our blog! Our goal remains to give our visitors – a global mix of farmers, agriculture industry professionals, investors and AGCO employees around the world – the opportunity to take a look inside AGCO and our brands, as well as interact with us. It also serves as a platform to exchange information, find answers, and get expert advice from one another. 2013_4_10_blog_anniversary_v2

As we look back during the past year, we wanted to share some of your favorite blog posts:

Top 3 Blog Posts from Past Year:

  1. AGCO Launches Mobile App for Professional Farmers – The announcement of our new mobile app, AGCOMMAND, an innovative app for farmers around the world.
  2. Massey Ferguson 9500 series Combine Proudly Waves the Maple Leaf – Featuring an image of a combine wrapped in the Canadian flag.
  3. AGCO Publishes First Sustainability Report – When AGCO published the first global sustainability report.

There were many great blog posts throughout the year, and we look forward to sharing more with you in the future. Share in the comments below which blog post was your favorite.

We look forward to many more years of bringing you the best in agriculture!

Tosin Odunfa’s Experience at the AGCO Africa Summit 2013

The AGCO Africa Summit in Berlin in January came and went by very quickly but not so fast as to deny me of memorable moments. First of all I would like to thank AGCO for granting me this great opportunity as their Africa Ambassador 2013. It was overwhelming to be chosen via the video contest from more than 30 applicants and it was a great experience to host such a top-class international conference.

Tosin Odunfa

As was to be expected, the high profile representatives from industry and government from within and outside Africa left indelible impressions on me with their varying perspectives about agriculture. Agriculture plays a major role in Africa’s future and the world’s food security. It was not a surprise that the final keynote speech by Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria, was potent enough to make any businessman, who may have never considered becoming a farmer, to entertain thoughts of serious involvement in ‘agri-business’.

Meeting and interacting with experts of various nationalities and cultures who all have Africa in common one way or another was indeed an experience of high value. It was a particular delight and also a deep honor to announce the speeches of Former Presidents John Agyekum Kufuour (Ghana) and Horst Koehler (Germany).

I cherish the memories of each distinguished speaker that I had the honor of presenting but there is certainly one that stands out much more than any of the others in my mind. Laetitia Mukungu started her entrepreneurial journey at a very young age and indeed at the time of the conference she was 16 or 17 years old. Her delivery of the story of how she started her foray into rabbit farming in Kenya was as remarkable as the content of the story itself. It is no wonder that she is a 2012 Anzisha Fellow, one of several laurels that I expect this young dynamic woman to win. (She has also most recently won the Diana Prize, March 2012.)

Laetitia spoke very clearly about how and why she started rabbit farming, an initiative that would grow into an excellent example of social entrepreneurship with her Women Rabbit’s Association and My Idea Rabbit Center. Her presentation about why she chose rabbits over other livestock was so compelling that I have begun to ponder why I should not start my very own rabbit farm in Nigeria.

The AGCO Africa Summit, Agriculture in Africa – From Vision to Action, served as a call to action for all involved; policy makers, farmers, financiers and entrepreneurs. Participants got insight into the peculiarities of the African agribusiness landscape with the incredible opportunities available through sustainable agriculture.

I am certainly pleased to have been involved and I am grateful to AGCO’s leadership and very talented international team for the opportunity. It was a great honor to meet and interact closely with Martin Richenhagen , Nuradin Osman and several other inspiring leaders of this leading global agricultural equipment manufacturer.

This report would be incomplete without mentioning the delight of experiencing Germany for the first time: the food, the people and the architecture that had me take pictures and video clips enough for a mini documentary. Visiting Berlin in the dead of winter was indeed as cold as expected but the allure of the city could not be overcome by the snow and chill. The sophistication of the city and its rich history is hard to go unnoticed while looking through the windows of your taxi or while going on foot down any Strasse.

I look forward to another trip to Berlin, but more importantly I envision the many great and innovative actions that AGCO, its partners, customers, suppliers and you and I will take on in the coming years for agriculture in Africa. Thank you AGCO for your commitment in Africa and thanks to all the participants for moving last year‘s conversation forward – I am glad to be a part of this and I am happy to be your AGCO Africa Ambassador in 2013.

Sold on Fendt for Life

As a Fendt owner for more than 10 years, Jerry Ryerson, who farms near Ames, Iowa, says there are only two things wrong with Fendt tractors.
“First, if you buy one, you’re going to want another one within a year,” he says with a grin. “The other is if you have any hired help, you won’t get much chance to
drive it yourself.” 
On a more serious note, however, Ryerson says he loves everything about the two Fendt tractors he presently owns. Having already owned and traded an 818, an 820 and a 716, which was his very first Fendt, his current lineup includes a Model 412, which he describes as one of only a handful in the United States, and a Model 824. The latter serves as his planter and tillage tractor, while the 412 — equipped with a Fendt loader and a 3-point mounted backhoe — serves as a utility tractor.

“I also use the 824 as a transport vehicle, pulling two 760-bushel wagons behind it, in place of a truck,” he continues. “Even though I’m hauling grain up to five miles, I can still keep ahead of an 8-row combine.” Ryerson says there are plenty of features that make his largest Fendt the ideal transport vehicle, not the least of them being the 32-mph road speed. “With the Vario transmission and the ABS braking, stopping and starting are just as smooth as can be,” he relates. “Plus, with the reactive steering and the Fendt Stability Control system, I can run wide open and not have a bit of sway with the wagons.”

Of course, Ryerson is just as happy with the tractor in the field. In fact, he says he covered 110 acres with a 20-foot soil aerator after corn harvest and used just 7/10th of a gallon of diesel per acre. He’s impressed, too, with all the details Fendt thought of, like a built-in air compressor, enough hydraulic pressure to lift the rear of the tractor so he can install or remove the duals, and the touch screen multifunction Varioterminal that controls everything from one screen.

“I just love the TI (teach in) feature in the headland management program,” he says. “I can write and edit while I’m running in the field. I even figured out how to tie the autosteer into the program so it reengages after the turn. “Once you drive a Fendt, you never want to drive anything but a Fendt,” he concludes. “But I’m not the only one that thinks that way. I’ve had people ride with me and drive it, only to comment, ‘Why would anybody want to buy anything else?’”

Happy New Year – Help Us Enhance Our Blog for a Chance to Win AGCO Gear!

With the new year upon us, the AGCO team wants to continue to provide you with relevant and valuable information. We want to know more about you and what posts you would like to see on the AGCO blog for 2013. We are asking you to take our brief survey so we can find out what you want to read!

Tell us what type of content you would like to see, and we will make it happen. Share with us what you love about AGCO, and we will continue to deliver it for you.

Also, by completing the survey and entering your email address (optional), you will be entered for a chance to win some awesome AGCO gear!

Click here to take our survey!

 

 

 

World Food Day

In 1979, the Food and Agriculture Association of the United Nations (FAO) proclaimed October 16th as World Food Day.

Today is a global observance designed to raise awareness and understanding of different approaches to ending hunger. Food is a wonderful thing, and thanks to new technology and innovation in farming practices, farmers today are able feed around seven billion people globally! However, because our population is growing at such a fast pace, there are still roughly a billion people around the world that do not get enough food. This means that almost 1 in 7 people go to bed hungry every night. As our population has grown, hunger has become an increasingly prevalent issue. World Food Day seeks to remind us of this challenge, and also spotlight the different ways in which we can help the farmers tasked with overcoming it. Every year, World Food Day is accompanied with a theme. Last year, the theme was “Food prices- from crisis to stability.” This year, the theme is “Agricultural Cooperatives- key to feeding the world.” As many farmers know, an agricultural cooperative is a member owned organization which allows farmers to pool all of their resources into different areas of activity. According to the FAO, agricultural Co-ops are fundamental in providing solutions to the hunger problem because they allow smallholder farms to negotiate better prices for resources such as seed, fertilizer, and equipment. Take for example one of AGCO’s customers, Agrifirm. Agrifirm is a Dutch cooperative that serves over 17,000 Dutch farmers and horticulturists. They offer “maximum purchasing advantage of high quality products like animal feeds, seeds, fertilizers and pesticides.” In addition to product purchasing power, Agrifirm also offers knowledge and sustainable solutions to its members. Cooperatives such as Agrifirm allow farmers to access to knowledge and equipment that will help boost farm productivity at a lower cost. The more that small scale farms are able to produce, the better they will be able to support their local regions. This is why the U.N believes agricultural cooperatives to be a key element in providing for our world. It is no secret that farmers are faced with a huge task in supplying food, fiber and fuel for a rapidly growing population. It will not be easy—but with the proper resources, continued advances in technology, and widespread participation—it will be possible. Learn more about world food day, and see how you can help make a difference!

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