Podcasts are a popular modern media option, with over 1 million active shows on almost every topic under the sun. Jacob Morgan, extension director in Jones County, North Carolina, did find one gap to fill, however, which led to him creating the Crop Sense podcast.
Crop Sense provides current, topical expertise on North Carolina field crops. The episodes are short, snackable 15- to 20-minute segments.
“We want to answer specific questions, but keep the topics distinct. That way growers can choose which episodes are relevant to them and which they could skip if they don’t grow a particular crop,” Morgan said.
Most episodes are Q&A-style formats with N.C. State extension specialists. Upcoming topics include soybean concerns, insect and weed concerns from rain, and the complex legal issues and critical stop-use dates for auxin. But Morgan says he’ll consider interviewing anyone on any research-based crop topic.
“We try to cover the whole state, but recognize that there are regional differences in the crops grown and some technique nuances due to soil types. But overall, if you are a corn, wheat, soybean, tobacco, or cotton grower, it’s for you,” he said.
Morgan started his Crop Sense podcast in mid-May after hearing a similar one in the Midwest.
“I was inspired by a Nebraska extension podcast I heard,” he said. “I listen to a lot of podcasts on the road and didn’t see anyone in North Carolina talking about local agronomic topics. So I thought I’d give it a go.”
Podcasts like Crop Sense convey up-to-date information in a modern platform, much like the Zoom webinars, YouTube shows, and virtual event libraries. But the podcast audio format has two distinct advantages:
- It’s downloadable to a mobile device so it can be played when users don’t have internet access — like in the field or on rural backroads.
- Podcast services provide notifications of new episodes calling attention to well-timed updates.
“Modern farmers need and want information fast and in an easily accessible manner,” Morgan said. “The Crop Sense podcast is a very innovative approach to providing sound, applied, and timely statewide and regional information in an easily accessible format for the benefit of growers.”
How to listen to Crop Sense
Click the links below to listen to the Crop Sense podcast through each of these platforms: