About “Beyond the Rows”

Beyond the Rows is a Monsanto Company blog focused on one of the world’s most important industries, agriculture. Monsanto employees write about Monsanto’s business, the agriculture industry, and the farmer.
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What Do Farmers Have in Common with SXSW Attendees? Featured Article

Saturday morning, I was at a meeting in a room filled with farmers who had come from every county in Indiana to a meeting in Indianapolis. They asked me to help them understand about how you can talk about a topic you are highly passionate about when it can also be controversial. In other words, they were wondering how they could better connect with others. It was a great way to start my day!

The room’s demographics reflected what we see in agriculture a lot of the time. There were more of the greatest generation and baby boomers than millennials, … Full Article »

Pick a Peck of Peppers Plus Some! Featured Article

When you look at a pepper, what do you think about? What do you see?

I still remember vividly the first meeting I was in where a bowl of bell peppers was passed around and people bit into them like apples! I was still thinking of bell peppers as the kind of things my mom cooked in spaghetti sauce.

Coworkers handed me the red, orange and yellow produce and encouraged me to try it. I wasn’t sure I wanted to bite that off, but then I looked around and several others were doing it. Seemed like it was worth a … Full Article »

Extraordinary Young Farmers & Ranchers Step Out of the Box Featured Article

This weekend, young farmers and ranchers from around the country met in Virginia Beach, Virginia. I don’t fit the age qualifications nor am I a farmer or rancher. I get to come because we support some of the group’s leadership development programs. And it gives me an incredible opportunity to see & hear about what young farmers & ranchers are facing.

One of those young farmers who’s from the city originally — Lauren Arbogast from a few hours west in this beautiful state — wrote a blog post that touched on some of the subjects discussed yesterday.

City girl –

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What would happen if an organic farmer toured Monsanto? Featured Article

One of the things I think most surprises people about Monsanto and its employees, is the fact that we serve a wide range of farmers, including organic farmers. For some reason people think we are exclusively a biotech company but I’ve had the chance to visit several customers who have organic farms and several organic farmers have visited us. But this time, when an organic farmer visited, he decided to blog about it. The first few paragraphs follow but we encourage you to read the full post “An Organic Farmer Walks Into Monsanto…And This is What Happened” on Real … Full Article »

National FFA Convention

Inventing A Solution to the Kudzu Problem, Is it Child’s Play? Featured Article

Asking a question like “why would a teenager spend time thinking about kudzu?” Makes me wonder if everyone reading this is familiar with the vine that takes over trees and acres of land throughout the south.

The vine was brought to the US as part of a US government trial in finding plants that would help curb soil erosion. But things went awry and well…. kudzu went out of control. For me, growing up Southern, kudzu was something we would see when we hit the road. I can remember playing games about what you could see in kudzu covered trees just … Full Article »

Casual Dialogues at the World Food Prize

Last week, I had the privilege to attend the Borlaug Dialogues, hosted by the World Food Prize. There were incredible conversations that I got to participate in for work, but the casual conversation at lunch on Thursday was one that struck me personally.

I had been delayed getting to the lunch and was thrilled to see an empty seat not too far from the door I came in. The program was under way so I quietly walked up & asked if the seat was taken. It wasn’t so I quickly sat down.

A photo montage from some of the first

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Lining Up For Fresh Sweet Corn, GMO Sweet Corn Featured Article

Sweet corn season is a little bit later this year than usual but it’s probably beginning to peak in the St. Louis area. And Monsanto employees are really devoted to their sweet corn like most Midwesterners.

This week we’ve been celebrating sweet corn in a variety of ways. I’ll have to write about it a few times, but last week, we did something a little different on our headquarters campus — of course we picked the hottest day of the summer to do an outside event! We had a local farmer set up a farmer’s market for a few … Full Article »

Where do “ag girls” fit in a crowd of thousands of bloggers? Featured Article

Last week, thousands of women from all over the US who are passionate about blogging packed suitcases, finalized child care and loaded their technology up for BlogHer ’13. The words BlogHer ’13 probably don’t mean much to many of you, but for women who blog, it is the one time of the year where women from every walk of life get together to network, support each other and learn about making their blogs better.

Thousands of bloggers attend annually, coming from the host city and countries in other hemispheres. They write about a full range of topics women are … Full Article »

The Chicago Council Symposium on Global Food Security Featured Article

This week, I have the opportunity to be a fly on the wall in a place where some incredible minds are going to discuss global challenges regarding food production.  The Global Food Security Symposium 2013, hosted by The Chicago Council, will “urge U.S. leadership in mobilizing science, increasing trade and capitalizing on the power of business to meet future food demand.” A topic this big requires a broad range of people to be engaged, and that’s exactly who will be in the room — leaders from science, government, business and civil society.

When I discovered that I … Full Article »

A Beltwide Cotton Conference First After Decades of Attending Featured Article

It’s that time of the year when farmers are headed to meetings to hear about new products, agronomic practices and other things that will be beneficial to know in the coming year. Meetings are held locally, by state and by various commodity organizations. If you are a cotton farmer or work in the cotton industry, you are probably already thinking about the Beltwide Cotton Conferences. I know I am.

The Beltwide holds a long tradition for the industry as well as for many of its members. I wrote about my first Beltwide experience before.  There are meetings of all … Full Article »