From the Farm to the Finish Line

September 8, 2016 / by U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance Categories: Association News, Minnesota Soybean Growers Association

Unique partnership will engage consumers at Chicagoland NASCAR race

The conversation about food and farming is about to move into the fast lane.

Through a partnership believed to be the first of its kind, several leading agriculture-related organizations and two high-profile NASCAR drivers are coming together to fuel conversations about food and how it’s produced.

BRANDT, WinField and the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) are joining with NASCAR drivers Dakoda Armstrong and Justin Allgaier for a multifaceted Let’s Talk Food event at the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Chicagoland Speedway on Sept. 17. Let’s Talk Food is designed to spark conversations between farmers and consumers about how food is grown and raised, and address questions about the safety, sustainability and nutritional aspects of their food.

Armstrong and Allgaier, who both come from farming and rural community backgrounds, respectively, will be the primary faces of Let’s Talk Food with each driving matching Let’s Talk Food-branded cars. This will be the first time that identical, agriculture-related cars have been part of a NASCAR event, effectively doubling the visibility for Let’s Talk Food on race day. An estimated 50,000 people are expected to attend the race with another 2 million watching on TV and online.

“NASCAR gives us an amazing platform to talk with consumers,” said Karl Barnhart, chief marketing officer at BRANDT. “By working with WinField and USFRA on Let’s Talk Food, we can create visibility and drive awareness of food and farming with millions of consumers. We welcome a true dialogue around the sustainability, safety and security of today’s agricultural products and practices. We invite consumers to join us in talking about food.”

Let’s Talk Food will reach audiences in a multitude of ways:

  • ONLINE: LetsTalkFood.com, which will go live Sept. 13, will serve as the information hub for the initiative, featuring information on food production and addressing topics ranging from soil sustainability to food safety to farming.
  • NEWS COVERAGE: Journalists will be invited to learn more via a coordinated outreach effort prior to and including race day.
  • SOCIAL: A social media campaign will promote the Let’s Talk Food message via multiple platforms from JR Motorsports, WinField Racing, drivers Dakoda Armstrong and Justin Allgaier, Pat Patterson – SiriusXM’s “The Racing Guy” – and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  • EXPERIENTIAL: The Let’s Talk Food team will reach racegoers through a variety of activities at and near the Chicagoland Speedway, including a  competition featuring gravity racers built from vegetables and a challenge to lucky participants to make a sandwich in a pace car going more than 120 mph. Fans will also be able to meet with farmers and drivers Armstrong and Allgaier.

Let’s Talk Food is the latest in a sustained effort by ag leaders to engage consumers in dialogue about how and where their food is grown and raised. That effort has been spearheaded by the USFRA, a 6-year-old organization consisting of more than 90 farmer- and rancher-led organizations and agricultural partners. USFRA’s formation marked the first time agricultural groups at the national, regional and state levels came together to lead a conversation with Americans about how farmers raise food while also being stewards of the environment, responsibly caring for animals and maintaining strong businesses and communities.

“We are excited to partner with BRANDT and WinField on Let’s Talk Food. Our goal is to further enhance the conversations between farmers and consumers,” said Randy Krotz, CEO of USFRA. “By tapping into such a high-energy and high-visibility event, this partnership will move the food and farming conversation forward.”

A leading agriculture company, Brandt Consolidated, Inc. operates 24 ag supply outlets in central Illinois and sells specialty plant nutrition products across the country and around the world. Founded in 1953 by Glen Brandt and his sister Evelyn Brandt Thomas, the company has experienced aggressive growth under the leadership of President and CEO Rick Brandt. BRANDT’s focus is providing the products and services that give growers the best opportunity for maximum returns while building a stronger, healthier and more abundant food supply.

About U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance
The USFRA consists of more than 90 farmer- and rancher-led organizations and agricultural partners, working to engage in dialogue with consumers to increase confidence and trust in today’s agriculture.

About WinField
WinField translates broad-based agricultural agronomic information into local insights that can benefit agricultural and specialty markets in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Unmatched expertise, insights and product portfolios help retailers, their growers and others in agriculture be more competitive and meet the food demands of a growing population

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