Kim Cooper a respected ambassador for agriculture

first_imgKim Cooper grew up in Chatham, never farming a day in his life, but his career of more than four decades in agriculture has taken him to more than 30 countries and earned him the respect of the farm community.The author of the popular Food for Thought column, which has run in The Chatham Daily News for nearly 20 years, is retiring on Aug. 2.Cooper recalled visiting his grandparents’ farm in Jeannette’s Creek as a child but said a career in agriculture wasn’t on his radar.He credits Stu Irving, the former manager of the M.J. Smith Grain Company and fellow church member, for calling to offer him a job in the early 1970s.He took the job stocking shelves and began learning about seeds. He also met several farmers and learned about the chemical trade and fertilizer.“I just fell in love with agriculture, that was the start of it,” Cooper said.During this time, he developed some health problems but wanted to attend Ridgetown’s agriculture college. His employer paid his tuition, and he returned with a diploma and a desire to learn more about agriculture “because I was just eating this up.”Cooper went to the University of Guelph, but had to drop out due to health reasons. Not obtaining that degree is something he’s always regretted.He came back to work at M.J. Smith before landing a job at King Grain in Pain Court in 1985. He spent 10 years there, gaining a lot of knowledge by doing everything from loading fertilizer and making deliveries to formulating fertilizer blends and selling.“Eventually, I got into grain trading, so I bought and sold all the corn, wheat and soybeans out there for a number of years,” Cooper said.He spent another year with the company after it was purchased by Thompsons, working in the soybean export program,From there, he joined the Ontario Soybean Growers’ Association for 10 years, working as their marketing specialist. He later joined Southwest Ag before taking a position with Chatham-Kent’s economic development department nearly 12 years ago to work as an agriculture specialist.Cooper’s career has taken him across the globe, including visits to Japan and China, where he’s met farmers from many different countries along with company presidents and ambassadors.He also became well respected for raising awareness about local agriculture through his weekly newspaper column.He recalled being on the agriculture committee of the then Chatham and District Chamber of Commerce at a time when there was a lot of bad press about farming.“I said, ‘We need to have some good news stories in the media. How about we go to The Chatham Daily News and see if we can submit a monthly article on some of the positive benefits of agriculture.’”Since it was his idea, Cooper was chosen to write the first column.The Daily News agreed to run the piece, but Cooper said it wasn’t long before he was requested to submit a weekly column, which he has done faithfully on a voluntary basis.Cooper said writing that column has helped him learn even more about agriculture over the years.“I know it’s a good article when people come up to me and say, ‘Hey, I read your article, I didn’t know that.’”He said that kind of response is the reason for writing the column, helping bring more awareness to the $3-billion agriculture industry in Chatham-Kent.Cooper has even arranged meetings between readers and farmers because readers wanted to learn more about agriculture.“I see myself as a conduit between the average citizen who doesn’t really understand agriculture and the ag sector.”Cooper has earned the trust and respect of the local agricultural community.Ron Faubert has worked with Cooper both as a farmer and in his capacity as president of the Kent Federation of Agriculture.“Kim was always an ambassador for agriculture,” Faubert said.He credits Cooper for working hard to move agricultural issues forward, saying the columnist “understood our issues.”“(It was) because he was involved in agriculture through the different employment he’s had over the years,” Faubert added.Even though Cooper didn’t grow up on a farm, Faubert said his friend “developed a passion for agriculture and you could tell that in everything he did.”He suggested this passion is unique, noting most people who weren’t raised with farming aren’t that interested in agriculture or share the sector’s concerns.“But, for some reason, Kim had some of that in his blood, and he was very good at it.”Cooper said deciding to retire “was a tough decision because I love what I’m doing.”“I’ve loved all my jobs in agriculture,” he said,  “and the people I’ve worked with.”As readers of his column know, faith is major part of Cooper’s life.“My philosophy on life as Christian is God’s got a plan for my life and he’s got a plan for this next chapter in my life,” he said.Cooper said he’ll miss his job in agriculture, but added he still has his relationships with people and he’ll still stay connected.“But it’s time to move on.”eshreve@postmedia.comlast_img read more

Neotel launches home phone service

first_imgPrice differentiator 23 October 2008 “We believe that we have hit the nail on the head with this product, particularly in light of the current economic conditions,” Neotel Consumer Business Unit head Mukul Sharma said in a statement this week. According to Neotel, a key differentiator of the company’s home phone offering is the call rates. “During the course of 24 months, a usage discount of up to R25 will be given back to the consumer every month,” Sharma said. “This effectively means that consumers could be reimbursed for the full purchase price of the phone.” “This eliminates the risk of losing your service due to copper [cable] theft.” Two packages There is no differentiation between Neotel-to-Neotel peak and off peak rates, which are charged at 17 cents per minute for local calls at all times. Both packages operate on true per-second billing for all calls, from the first second onwards. SAinfo reporter Neotel’s home phone is available in two packages, the first of which allows the consumer to purchase the phone upfront for R599, followed by a monthly service fee of R99. “While the product focuses on providing consumers with high-quality voice, they also have the option of utilising data, sms and e-mail, which is provided as part of the service,” Sharma said, adding that a further benefit of Neotel’s home phone was that the service was delivered via a fixed-wireless product. The second package does not require an upfront payment for the phone, and is charged at R199 per month. “Consumers are feeling the pinch of global and local economic pressures and are continuously looking to save costs, but still stay in touch. “At 34 cents per minute for local peak landline calls, and 17 cents per minute for local off-peak landline calls, communicating will become more affordable for the consumer,” Sharma said. Neotel has launched a home phone service in South Africa’s major metropolitan areas, making use of the company’s fixed-wireless network – with local peak rates to all landlines set at almost half the price consumers are currently paying. “Neotel’s home phone is a home phone that offers impeccable voice quality, delivery within 48 hours of successful order completion and no installation required,” he said. “On this package, users receive 1 000 free Neotel-to-Neotel minutes and 200 free sms within Neotel’s coverage area, [with] the free minutes [being] applicable for local, regional and national calls,” Sharma said. Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

CoRank Relaunches: Create Your Own Digg

first_imgWhen CoRank launched in March it was a social news ranking site (like Digg) that filtered news based on your sources — people whose opinion you value. Or, as CoRank founder Rogelio Bernal Andreo told us, it was “yet another boring bookmarking site.” Today, the site relaunched with a new focus: allowing users to create their own, branded social news and bookmarking site based on CoRank’s technology using a set of simple online tools.Rogelio, who is also the founder of eGrupos, one of the largest Spanish-speaking social networks on the web, said that a trial run of the new CoRank on the Spanish version revealed some demand for this type of build-your-own-digg service (Rumoreame is an example of a customized CoRank running on the Spanish language version that is getting some use). Related Posts Creating a site on CoRank is a simple 3 step process. Choose a name and subdomain, enter a description, choose a design and set up your categories. After your site is set up, you can change any of the settings you chose during sign up, or access the HTML and CSS for real customization of its look and feel. You can monetize your creation using Google Adsense. CoRank’s customization and management tools are all very easy to use (they passed the difficult “Can Josh understand them?” test).Is It Worth It?It may seem fruitless to try competing with Digg, but I think that because of CoRank’s twist, which attempts to eliminate the mob from social news voting, there is an opportunity for tighter social networking as a result. CoRank offers its users a “Like Minded” feature, which gives you statistics on the 50 users who are most like you based on voting and submission. Tags:#news#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… I think this presents an opportunity for CoRank to allow users to connect in a way that most social networks don’t offer: based on how similarly you think. CoRank’s new version will allow people to create specialized, topical versions of that concept. So, for example, I could create a movie news site that would allow people to connect with other, like minded movie geeks. Beyond just sharing a love of movies, CoRank’s tools would allow users to find people who actually share a similar outlook on the film industry.What do you think? Is there a place for branded, topical social news and bookmarking sites? josh catone 1 Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

Mario Balotelli banned from driving after taking his Ferrari for 109mph spin

first_imgLiverpool striker has also been fined 800 pounds alongside a 28-day driving ban for the offenceLiverpool striker Mario Balotelli has been fined 800 pounds and banned from driving for 28 days after he admitted speeding at 109 mph in his Ferrari.Balotelli was stopped in his Ferrari for driving at 109 mph early on December 3, 2014 on the M62 at Tarbock Island, Merseyside. The 24-year-old had been driving his 240,000 pounds left-hand drive Ferrari, reports incident escalated after Balotelli failed to appear in court last week, though his solictor Mike Hogan on Friday said the Italian star never received a summons and was not intentionally ignoring the court.Balotelli was also ordered to pay an 80 pound surcharge and 100 pounds in court costs. Hogan apologised on Balotelli’s behalf but said the footballer has a clean driving record.last_img read more