Farm Bureau Insight: Agriculture Around The World

By Glenn Brunkow, Pottawatomie County farmer and rancher

This week I will embark on one of the greatest adventures I will probably ever have in my life. I will be traveling with Kansas Farm Bureau’s Casten Fellows to Uganda and Tanzania. To say I am excited would be an understatement. To also say that I am a bit apprehensive and even more nervous would also be correct. All I know for sure is this will change my perspective on the world.

Personally, I like to look for challenges or experiences that will help me grow and will stretch my view of the world. This trip should certainly do that. All I know is my own little corner of Kansas. I have been lucky enough to experience other parts of the state and the United States, and that has helped me as a person. My view of the world has changed from those experiences. I can only imagine how it will change from what will happen over the next two weeks.

I hope to pick up some ideas that will help me when I get back. I am also hopeful this trip will allow me to appreciate the blessings I have been given and, I am sure, take for granted. I also hope this trip will give me greater insight about how important the work we do on our farms and ranches is.

I hope I come home with a greater appreciation for the good work we do in Kansas Farm Bureau and in agriculture in general.
I am sure most, if not all, of you feel like I do, and it is our responsibility to produce as much food and fiber as we can for a world that is in desperate need of it. I am proud of what we do, and I am proud and humbled to represent that to other nations. I also realize I do not understand other parts of the world like I should, and I hope to gain insight through the next two weeks.

This is another example of some of the opportunities I have had through Kansas Farm Bureau and an example of experiences any of you who are members could have, too. My understanding of agriculture in Kansas and the United States has grown exponentially because of these experiences and soon my global understanding will be greater also. I am telling you about this to encourage each of you to take advantage of the opportunities and expand your understanding of agriculture.

Am I nervous about the unknown of this trip? You bet I am. Am I a little worried about home and what might happen while I am gone? Without a doubt. Those are just part of the experience. The hardest part of any Farm Bureau trip is when the mailbox is still in the rearview mirror. I promise to write more about the trip in this space, but I hope this will inspire at least a few of you to take advantage of opportunities available to stretch your understanding of agriculture.

“Insight” is a weekly column published by Kansas Farm Bureau, the state’s largest farm organization whose mission is to strengthen agriculture and the lives of Kansans through advocacy, education and service. 

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.


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