Got a great note from a CropLife eNews reader about our top story last week, and his comments point out a flaw in my presentation.
The July 28 article is “New Glyphosate Brand Launches,” which has been read by more than 1,100 of you so far, so we know it’s caught a lot of attention. The article notes that a chemical broker has launched a generic glyphosate product as its first proprietary crop protection product.
But the article’s presentation fell short, as reader Andy H. Smith was quick to let me know: I should have been more direct in mentioning the effect of this announcement on your crop protection business, which you have worked so hard to build.
Andy laid it on the line in his note:
“I don’t agree with the fact that this magazine promotes a company such as National Ag Chem Associates. You are to help promote retail dealers and a company such as National Ag Chem takes us out of the loop. When you have a company that markets directly to the end-user, we can not match the price scheme that they are using; it only makes things worse when something goes wrong, for we will be the ones out at the customer’s property. Any good fieldman will tell you that it does not matter where the farmer bought the product that they use on their crop, but if something goes wrong and you are walking the field, it will become the fieldman’s problem real quick.”
Honestly, Andy, I’m all about championing U.S. and Canadian dealerships and cooperatives because they provide not just products, but also many essential agronomic, followup, and other services to growers. You and every ag retailer are a critical part of the agriculture equation, and that’s one of the key questions the CropLife staff puts to manufacturers and others on a daily basis: “Where does the retailer fit in your program?”
Part of this newsletter’s role is to keep all of you, as ag retailers, aware of news that should enlighten and/or concern you, helping you prepare for your grower-customers’ interests and questions. And that’s something we’ll continue to do to assist you in providing top services. Notes like Andy’s – which remind us to point out when you’re being left out of the loop, or tell us what topics you care about, or what questions you wished we had asked – are essential to keeping CropLife® and CropLife IRON magazines, CropLife eNews, and CropLife.com fresh, original, and a critical part of your business success. That’s why we’re interested in, appreciate, and incorporate your feedback and comments, so keep those coming!