This weekly podcast dives into the agbioscience sector, where agriculture, life sciences innovation and cutting-edge technology converge. Agbioscience is an in-depth conversation with leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs across food, animal health. plant science and agtech. Learn more about industry innovation and where it's heading from those leading the way.

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Monday Jan 29, 2024

Telling the real story behind agbioscience innovation and what’s happening on farms requires a willingness to bravely sit at tables where you might be misunderstood. Michelle Miller, The Farm Babe, found seats at those tables over a decade ago and has become one of the most influential voices and advocates for modern, high-tech agriculture. From The Today Show to Forbes and People Magazine, Michelle has been breaking myths about where our food comes from and helping consumers better connect to their food through her moniker – The Farm Babe. 
But her advocacy wasn’t always on behalf of the farmer. Michelle talks about her time on Rodeo Drive, her once belief in the misinformation surrounding agriculture and how life changes also changed her mindset. Whether it’s biotech or artificial intelligence (AI), she talks about how she’s approached those topics with consumers – hint: it starts with empathy for those who are trying to learn more.  
What excites Michelle about the future of agbioscience and modern agriculture? From animal health to plant science, she talks about the future of our food and how farmers will continue to do more with less. 

Monday Jan 22, 2024

Ask new CEO of AgReliant Genetics about his career journey and you’ll get an interesting take from him: it’s not at all what he expected. But whether he’s been launching, fixing or changing products, systems and processes, agbioscience innovation has been the fabric of his story. This week, Brian Barker joins us to talk about making the leap into leadership of AgReliant’s longstanding reputable brands. 
From global turbulence to urban sprawl and a growing population, how does AgReliant view their next wave of innovation to meet the demands that evolve globally? As Brian says, that corn kernel is more like a microchip than anything else and getting everything you can out of the plant will remain their focus. From gene editing to analytic tools, the new wave has just begun.  
What’s ahead for AgReliant Genetics? Brian says it starts with AgReliant’s people and doubling down on what they do best. 

Wednesday Jan 17, 2024

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) has become synonymous with innovation and that was certainly the case in Las Vegas last week as agbioscience brands like John Deere, Kubota and more flooded the tradeshow floor. Kristen Owen, executive director of equity research at Oppenheimer and Co., joins us to talk about innovation’s ability to create impact in a tightening economy and what she sees ahead as major shifts in industry trends. 
One of the big ones from CES? Artificial intelligence (AI). With the cost of capital still high, AI has a chance to move from hype to help. Kristen examines where it can impact productivity in agriculture – from equipment to the bio-economy – to reduce variability for farmers’ operations. 
As we brace for economic turbulence, what does Kristen see ahead for the broader food and ag economy? She talks about the investment landscape that will impact the next wave of agbioscience innovation, austerity creating opportunity and the one big trend she sees for the industry in 2024. 

Monday Jan 15, 2024

AgroRenew’s story begins where most good ideas form: at the kitchen table. Founders Brian and Katie Southern join us to talk about a new transformation in agbioscience – unused watermelon byproduct (rinds) becoming eco-friendly bioplastics. Based in Knox County, Indiana, AgroRenew announced plans at the end of 2023 for an $83 million investment in the form of a processing facility, a business that will ultimately employ nearly 250 people. 
All the right factors came together to make this new company possible. Knox County is known for specialty crop production (watermelons, cantaloupe, pumpkins) and the Southerns have worked closely with The Pantheon to bring this idea to life. Brian and Katie talk about the science behind the product, their long-term vision to blend with other crop waste streams and contributing to a circular economy that generates more sustainability in the agbiosciences. 
So what comes next? Brian and Katie discuss their long-term objectives and potential, adding value to the farmer’s operation and the timeline of getting AgroRenew plastics in stores. 

Monday Jan 08, 2024

What’s in a name? For the world’s second-largest animal health company, Elanco, its name bears roots from Eli Lilly and Company.  More than an acronym for a name, though, the company is on a growth trajectory, an innovation engine looking to create a positive impact for the world’s animals. And for Dr. Tyre Grant, Vice President of Global Product Development and Project Management, the name defines her 19-year career as a scientist (a resume she calls a privilege).  
Tyre joins us today to talk about how Elanco thinks about innovation for both farm animal and pet health, what the company is uniquely positioned to solve and how that mindset focuses her team when it comes to bringing new products to the market. She also gets into the importance of partnerships when it comes to innovation, spinning out technologies and striking the right balance to create the most value to farmers and pet owners.  
As a career scientist, what has Tyre seen as the biggest advances in the industry over the last two decades? And how do those set the tone for the next 20 years and what’s to come? Tyre talks automation and the intersection between human and animal health solutions. She also gives advice to future scientists looking for their role in the agbioscience industry. 
Listen to Dr. Jennifer Miller’s episode on Elanco’s monoclonal antibody for Parvovirus in puppies here.

1. Determining our destiny

Tuesday Jan 02, 2024

Tuesday Jan 02, 2024

From his cowboy boots to his tall stature, Governor Eric Holcomb is a presence. You’ve likely heard him, though not like this. How did Indiana’s leader come to be? He joins us today to tell his story, to dive into his sense of urgency headed into the final 12 months of his administration and to talk about, of course, agbioscience. More specifically, its critical role in securing Indiana’s economy of the future. 
Indiana has evolved rapidly under his leadership and Holcomb has established a new approach to economic development – from the READI program and the LEAP concept just north west of Indianapolis, to name a few. How do these assets shape our future? Holcomb talks about being ready for what's coming and making sure we’ve not put our eggs in one industry basket. He also talks leadership, having a plan and being ready to keep eyes and ears open to adapt to the moment. 
Heading into the fourth turn (a little IndyCar reference), where is Holcomb focused? This is our time, he says, and carpe diem. And because we like basketball in Indiana – it's time to step up to the line, block out the boos and knock down those important shots to make great things happen. 

Tuesday Dec 26, 2023

From food security as national security to innovation as sustainability, we covered a lot of ground on Agbioscience in 2023! Here are the top five most downloaded episodes of the year. We look forward to seeing you in 2024. Happy holidays! 

50. A look back at 2023

Monday Dec 18, 2023

Monday Dec 18, 2023

What a year it’s been! The team at AgriNovus Indiana wants to thank you for listening to Agbioscience in season 6 and to let you know – there are still plenty of episodes to go. Season 7 will kick off on January 2. 
In the meantime, take a walk back through 2023 with us – from agtech consolidation to new companies emerging, Indiana has a lot to celebrate. We talk about the big themes in agbioscience over the last year, how the industry is evolving and emerging trends we feel are here to stay for a while. You’ll hear from past guests and get a glimpse on what to expect in the new year.  

Wednesday Dec 13, 2023

In partnership with the Indiana Corn Marketing Council and Indiana Soybean Alliance, the 2023 Producer-Led Innovation Challenge tasked companies, entrepreneurs, students and innovators with creating new revenue streams from current on-farm processes to increase efficiency and return on investment for producers’ operations. 
FiberX, the winning team of this year's challenge, works with corn growers to source and convert corn stover into a feedstock for the chemical and materials sectors. The company’s product portfolio includes natural fiber-reinforced plastic polymer pellets and fiber for the plastic injection molding industry, focusing on customers producing durable products for long-term use such as outdoor furniture. Their team, comprised of Dave Skibinski, Wade Lange and Tom Santelli, has already received a Manufacturing Readiness Grant from Conexus Indiana and an Innovation Voucher for Elevate Ventures. As winners of the Producer-Led Innovation Challenge, FiberX receives $25,000 to help accelerate commercialization of their solution. 
Dave Skibinski joined us following the winners announcement to talk about how the FiberX team will use their $25,000, creating new revenue streams for the farmer and what's ahead for their company.

49. The next giant leap

Monday Dec 11, 2023

Monday Dec 11, 2023

A law signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1862 created the cornerstone for America’s leadership in engineering and agriculture. Known as the Morrill Act, the law established land grant universities in states across the country, including Purdue University in Indiana. Since the university’s launch in 1869, it has become a research powerhouse becoming the only university in the country to have both a top 10 ranked college of agriculture and college engineering. Its graduates include 27 astronauts, 3 World Food Prize laureates, 2 Noble Prize winners and the pace continues to quicken. Today we are joined by Purdue’s Executive Vice President of Research, Dr. Karen Plaut, to share how the university is building on its momentum to advance research and create the economy of the future. 
Asking “what if” has been the cornerstone of Karen’s career and she talks all things innovation at Purdue and where they see their greatest opportunities for impact – from agbioscience to aerospace. As the former dean of the College of Agriculture,  she explores the idea that technologies across different disciplines have meaningful effect on food. Karen also talks research influencing legislation, commercializing and conducting basic research that will drastically improve lives in the future. 
So, what are the next gigantic leaps for Purdue? Karen talks about students being at the core of the university’s success, new intersections for driving change and agbioscience’s critical role in the future. 

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