Have you ever realized how the word “free” seems to flip a switch in our psychology? It unleashes some primordial impulse telling us must immediately increase our material wealth.
In the agriculture world, we are absolutely no exception to this rule. These particular freebies often double as specific advertisements for the companies we’re proud to frequent. Yes, they’re fun little incidental trinkets, but we take a little extra pride in them.
It could be a trade show, a “thank you” from your sales rep, or a door prize at a convention. Whatever the case, it’s safe to say if you’ve been involved with the agriculture community and its social festivities for any amount of time, you’ve amassed a particular collection of these items.
The list could be endless, I’ve seen farm and agribusiness names on some pretty creative mediums, but here I’ve narrowed down the top ones. If ag business is your business, regardless of what you produce or raise, I’d put money down that you have some if not all of these items floating around your home, truck, and farm office. Here’s the countdown:
No. 7: The highly coveted promotional shirt. These are the rarer prizes. It may require some participation or just getting lucky. They usually end up with the sleeves hacked off, embellished with a few holes and stains. It’s always worn with pride.
No. 6: Electronic items with an ag twist. There are phone chargers, pop sockets, or even portable speakers. I’m very proud of my door prize Mycogen Seeds speaker — it’s a great conversation starter at parties.
No. 5: Pens to keep track of your never ending to-do list. Every farmer has at least one in every pocket, a handful for the truck, and dozens for the farm office.
No. 4: Paper pads for your pens. This is the perfect companion for all those everyday field notes you take. They often have fun watermarks and covers as an added bonus.
No. 3: Anything and everything beverage related. Agriculture is exhausting work that demands optimal hydration, primarily in the forms of coffee, soft drinks, and adult beverages. All your industry leaders know this — you know this. It’s such a staple you’ve accumulated a wide variety of accessories for all your hydration needs at no charge! You have cozies, coasters, bottle openers, mugs, bottles, glasses …
No. 2: Stress relievers shaped like your favorite commodities, livestock, and equipment. Get it? Because farming is stressful. Betcha never caught onto that one!
No. 1: Hats. Lots of hats. Enough hats to last several lifetimes over. But of course, you’ll only wear your favorite one on the daily. Until it’s in threads, of course. And by the time you’re ready to move onto the next in your collection, you somehow accumulated three more to replace it. It’s a very prolific cycle.
- Stickers and magnets with your favorite campaign slogans that shamelessly promote your products.
- Free samples of livestock supplies including drugs, cow magnets and even ear tags.
- Reusable bags for holding all your free treasures, usually emblazoned with a seed or equipment company on the front. You get one at every trade show.
- A stack of catalogs, brochures, calendars and the like. Maybe you’ll look at them again, maybe you won’t.
Jaclyn Krymowski is a recent graduate of The Ohio State University with a major in animal industries and minor in agriculture communications. She is an enthusiastic “agvocate,” professional freelance writer, and blogs at the-herdbook.com.