November 20, 2017

“Why Science Matters to Me” – Win a Trip to D.C. with Bayer and National 4-H Council #ScienceMattersContest

Through their collaborative program Science Matters, Bayer and National 4-H Council are encouraging youth to consider how science impacts their everyday lives through a photo contest, “Why Science Matters to Me.” The winners of the contest will receive a trip for three to the National Youth Summit on Agri-Science, January 12-15, 2018. Held annually in Washington, D.C., the summit provides high school students from around the country with hands-on educational experiences that help them develop the skills and knowledge needed for the challenges facing agriculture, food security and sustainability.

Students may enter to win through the 4-H website or Instagram by submitting a photo showing how life science is behind the food you eat, benefits your health or helps your animals. Each photo should also include a 300-word maximum caption telling why science matters to them. All posts must include “#ScienceMattersContest” and be submitted by November 26, 2017.

“The contest inspires young people across the nation to think more critically about how life sciences are intertwined with their lives,” said Ray Kerins, Bayer’s Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs. “From taking care of pets to consuming a healthy diet, science impacts us in ways many youths may not realize. This contest enables students to see that science is so much more than a classroom subject; it’s fun and relevant. We can’t wait to see creativity from young people across the country.”

A panel of judges comprised of both Bayer and National 4-H Council employees will review all entries and select 10 finalists. The public will then have an opportunity to help choose the winners by voting on the 4-H website for their favorite photo from November 9 – December 6, 2017.

Three grand prize winners will receive a trip for three to Washington, D.C., to attend the National Youth Summit on Agri-Science in January 2018. Additionally, seven honorable mention award recipients will receive a $250 gift card to, 4-H’s online shop and another 50 contest particpants will be selected at random to win a $100 gift card to

To be eligible for this promotion, participants must be between the ages of 14-to-18-years old and legal residents of the U.S.

Science Matters is an initiative set forth by Bayer and National 4-H Council to spark the interest of young people across the nation in STEM-related fields, as well as instill a love for scientific discovery and provide students the tools they need to pursue STEM-related careers. To learn more about how Bayer and 4-H are supporting the next generation through Science Matters, visit .

Bayer is committed to bringing new technology and solutions for agriculture and non-agricultural uses. For questions concerning the availability and use of products, contact a local Bayer representative, or visit Crop Science, a division of Bayer, online at

Investing in Rural America – Workshop Puts Rural Entrepreneurs on the Radar of Private Capital Investors – AUDIO

There’s a workshop coming up on Thursday in Iowa that aims to spur investments in rural America.

Iowa’s agriculture-related businesses will have the opportunity to pitch investors from all over the country about why their business models are investment ready and worthy at The Rural Opportunity Initiative (ROI)-Iowa State University Rural Investment workshop on Thursday at the World Food Prize Hall of Laureates, in Des Moines, Iowa. The ‘pitchfest’ will begin around 1:30 p.m.

Each of these ‘investment-hungry’ Iowa entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to pitch their capital needs, while fielding questions from a ‘Shark Tank’ style panel of interested investors. One of the goals for the workshop and ROI is to help put rural businesses on the radar of investors who might be unfamiliar with the business landscape in rural states.

The Rural Opportunity Initiative originated with a former senior adviser to the Obama administration’s United States Department of Agriculture, Matt McKenna.

Once the Obama administration ended, McKenna and former USDA Rural Business Administrator Sam Rikkers asked Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business to provide a new home for the project. ROI is now part of Georgetown’s Global Social Enterprise Initiative (GSEI), whose mission is to help businesses be forces for good by creating social, economic and environmental impact on issues that will be solved by private, public and nonprofit leaders working across these sectors.

While this first workshop is in Iowa, McKenna says the goal is to expand to other land grant universities to promote the value of rural America and invest in its people, business and infrastructure.

Listen to our visit — >Iowa Investor Workshop Matt McKenna

The Iowa businesses will also have the opportunity to hear from the investors on what defines a good investment, and what makes a business ripe for investing. The invited businesses were identified by partner economic development institutions, including ISU Extension, Venture Net Iowa, Iowa EDA, USDA Rural Development Iowa and Iowa Innovation Corporation, as established businesses with unique growth potential.

In addition to Iowa State University, ROI is also in partnership with other land grant schools – Mississippi State University and Purdue University, and there are future plans to hold similar workshops in these locations.

Soybean Growers Respond to FDA Action on Heart Health Claim

The American Soybean Association (ASA) issued a statement Monday in response to indications from the Food and Drug Administration that the agency will revoke the unqualified health claim regarding soy protein and coronary heart disease (CHD). ASA President and Illinois farmer Ron Moore reiterated the ability of soy protein to contribute to heart health:

“In a time when heart disease is the number one cause of death both in the United States and the world, we can’t afford to discourage people from taking steps to improve their diets with heart-healthy ingredients. There is still evidence that shows eating soy protein can help reduce the risk of heart disease, and while we are of course disappointed that FDA is looking at moving the health claim for these products from ‘unqualified’ to ‘qualified,’ it’s important for consumers to remember that soy protein can be an important part of a heart-healthy diet. Even in today’s announcement, FDA still refers customers to the agency’s 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines, which state that healthy eating patterns include soy beverages and a variety of protein foods, including soy products. Moving forward, we hope that in its upcoming reevaluation of the available data, FDA will focus on the many studies that show the heart-healthy benefits of a diet that includes soy protein.”