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Editorial: First Top Crop Summit under my belt

March 2, 2023  By Derek Clouthier


Don Flaten speaks at Top Crop Summit 2023 in Saskatoon, Sask. Photo by Derek Clouthier

I missed attending live events during the past few years. Though it’s cheaper and more convenient to just hop on your computer and watch a virtual event, it’s not the same thing as being there in-person. You don’t get nearly the same level of interaction and one-on-one opportunities over Zoom that you do being at an event. And, that was one of the things that stood out to me while in Saskatoon Feb. 22-23 at Top Crop Summit. Being able to chat with our amazing group of speakers – which included Aaron Beattie and Aaron Mills, Charles Geddes and Don Flaten, Tyler Wist and Doug Munro, to name a few – and listen to their presentations was one of the best learning experiences I have had since becoming editor of this publication.

Industry events like Top Crop Summit are extremely valuable to the people who attend, whether they are farmers or agronomists looking to connect with colleagues, students in search of learning something new or someone like me making connections for the first time.

And, those connections in the agriculture sector seem to run deep. Speaking to several Summit attendees, it almost felt like it was one large family tree. Teachers who are now colleagues with their former students, people who have worked with each other in the past, conduct research together or follow each other’s work closely and eager to share their thoughts; it was interesting to see how close many in the industry are, and as time goes on, I hope to continue fostering my own relationships in the ag sector.

Looking to next year
Now that this year’s event has come to a close, we will start planning for 2024 this coming spring, and feedback from attendees and readers is vital for us putting on an event that is valuable to those in the industry.

This year’s Summit covered everything from pests and disease, nitrogen, fertilizer and weed management to crop rotations and malt barley insights. And, with the trials and tribulations of the past couple of years with COVID-19 and its impact on the farming community, this year’s event focused on the agility and resilience of Canada’s ag industry by showcasing the merits of Canadian farmers and the scientific community.

So, what would you like to see us focus on in 2024? What are the issues you are facing right now that need to be addressed for the betterment of the industry? And, how can we at Top Crop Manager ensure next year’s Summit is worth it for you to attend?

I invite anyone to email me suggestions for next year’s Top Crop Summit on topics you’d like to see on the agenda, or even a general theme you feel is important to address. I’m still new to the world of agriculture, and since the agenda for next year’s event will be mine to plan, I’ll definitely need your help. 

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