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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34. Slowing down to speed up

Monday Aug 28, 2023

Monday Aug 28, 2023

Their combined experience in agbioscience leadership has paved the way for Katie Sauer and Scott Keetle’s venture into helping industry companies grow and scale. This week, the Ephiphium Advising co-founders join us to talk about helping companies find their innovative spirit, using insights to help agbioscience companies grow and creating processes and procedures to enable business success.  
How do you help entrepreneurs grow while you’re also trying to grow a consulting business? Katie and Scott talk about the key ingredients that startups and medium-sized businesses need to consider, slowing down to speed up and making sure you focus as much on whole business growth as much as product growth. They also talk about digging deep into your organization to find great ideas from your team and staying curious to unlock new potential.   

Monday Aug 21, 2023

Artificial intelligence is projected to be among the fastest-growing jobs through 2027 based on survey results highlighted by World Economic Forum earlier this year. Known as AI, the discipline is making an impact on agbioscience, and today’s guest is partnering with a well-known celebrity’s foundation to ensure the agbioscience economy has the AI talent it needs. Dominique Pianeli, Senior Product Manager from Corteva, joins us to talk tech as a way of expressing her creativity and building tech platforms as a way of solving problems being huge in all sectors – from MySpace to Hobby Lobby, enter her career in agbioscience. 
Dominique gets into AI as it relates to agbioscience, Corteva’s partnership with The Mark Cuban Foundation AI Bootcamp and bringing high school students along to learn more about their future career opportunities; hint: there’s another one coming soon and an opportunity to register! She gets into what students can expect from Camp Corteva, where to apply at and how the camp paves the way for young people to imagine the future of AI.  

Monday Aug 14, 2023

Less than 1 percent of startups in the world are funded by venture capital, yet venture remains the focus for many seeking to advance innovation. Today’s guest is a veteran of the venture capital community and is here to shed more light on the role of venture and share a few tips for startups and big companies alike. Ting Gootee, CEO of TechPoint, joins us to talk capital connectivity in startups, big companies investing to create strategic product consolidation and how the venture community is evolving in the Midwest at large.   Ting also talks about investor interest in agbioscience and driving momentum using the customer voice. As the past Chief Investment Officer at Elevate Ventures, she lays out quick tips for entrepreneurs getting ready to make their first pitch including and how to create an “aha” moment rather than a “so what” moment. Ting also lays out for big companies the benefits of working with startups and entrepreneurs to expand their portfolio of solutions and looks ahead at agtech and its acceleration in Indiana. 

Monday Aug 07, 2023

The labyrinth of navigating foreign worker programs is one that is navigated by many … including many here in agbioscience. It’s a dizzying maze of service providers, forms, agencies and advisors, and it’s a system that a new startup connected to Purdue University is seeking to improve. Today we welcome agtech company Croft founder and CEO Scott Prince.   Scott is no stranger to startups. He gets into his passion for starting and growing businesses, what Croft aims to solve through innovation and what it would mean for the challenge to go un-solved. Farms struggle to find seasonal talent to help their operations run efficiently and Scott dives into the H2A program, the experience for the farm operator and the employee and how this streamlined option creates better trusting work relationships on both sides.   So why does an IU grad get into a venture studio at Purdue University? Scott gets into the go-to-market resources and opportunity to collaborate with a base of professionals that allow them to accelerate quickly and optimize their product. He also talks Indiana’s agtech ecosystem and what’s ahead for Croft. 

BONUS: Data making a better world

Wednesday Aug 02, 2023

Wednesday Aug 02, 2023

There will be more than 13,000 job openings annually across the U.S. for data scientists until 2031 – that’s according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics who also shares the median wages for those jobs will be more than 100,000 dollars. These numbers are big and they are across agbioscience. Dr. Sofia Brandariz Zerboni, Senior Data Scientist with Bayer, joins us to share her perspective on the opportunity and new partnerships making data science more accessible to companies and students across the Midwest.  Sofia talks about data science informing better decision making, Bayer’s approach to innovation and the average day of a data scientist in agbioscience. She gets into the company’s partnership with The Data Mine at Purdue University and enabling students from various backgrounds to understand the application of data science in the agbioscience. Diving into data making a better world, Sofia shares her advice for young people considering their career and agbioscience being a good fit for them. 

Monday Jul 31, 2023

Rankings are important. They provide a quick measure of relative strength, but sometimes the story of how those rankings were made possible are lost. Today’s guest has invested more than three decades delivering the work to make rankings like #3 college of agriculture in North America and #1 Agricultural and Biological Engeering graduate program a reality. He’s a great partner for agbioscience innovators and he is the new Dean of the Purdue University College of Agriculture -- Dr. Bernie Engel.  Bernie gets into Purdue’s growth story in the years he’s served at the university, their big focus on driving innovation and entrepreneurship and looking beyond agbioscience in the College of Agriculture. He talks about his deep connection to engineering, Purdue’s unique strength in partnerships and bringing those together to grow and accelerate meaningful connections.    How will Purdue continue working to meet the talent needs of a growing agbioscience industry? Bernie gets into the sector’s pace of change and helping students to adapt to that as they enter the workforce. He also talks about Purdue’s innovation portfolio, research paving the way for it to happen and what’s ahead at Purdue University’s College of Agriculture.  

Monday Jul 24, 2023

Renewable fuels and oils – those made from plants – are expected to grow more than tenfold in the next decade in the U.S. alone. Today’s guest is a veteran of the industry and has a unique view of the role plants and agbioscience can and will play in the energy transition. Doug Berven, Vice President of Corporate Affairs at POET, join us to talk about the company’s evolution from family farm struggling to make it to 35 years later being the largest bio-processor in the United States -- and the largest biofuels producer in the world.   Doug also talks about the opportunity at the intersection of biofuels and fossil fuels, electrification’s role in the energy transition and getting more resources from the surface of our land rather than from the center of the Earth. He also talks about the potential for agriculture globally being currently untapped, creating market conditions for countries dependent on agriculture to succeed with biofuels and our ability to feed the world (and then some) while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fighting climate change through the production of biofuels.  What can we learn from ethanol’s emergence in the early 2000s? Doug dives into its rejuvenation of rural America, expanding that impact globally and what’s ahead for this growing piece of the agbioscience economy (including the opportunities for decarbonization).  

Monday Jul 17, 2023

The intersection of human health and agbioscience is one rarely discussed, but it is one that is delivering innovation that may save lives. Today’s guest is long-time human health leader who is turning to agbioscience to develop a solution that could transform the way doctors care for patients with chronic, traumatic or surgical wounds. Andy Eibling, President and CEO of GeniPhys, joins us to talk about his journey from Eli Lilly to the leading the startup that inspires him to continue learning. He also talks about GeniPhys solving a problem that the human body cannot: producing collagen to aid the remodeling process that comes from injury, surgical wounds and more.   Andy gets into the opportunity for GeniPhys to cross into multiple verticals, how the agbiosciences help the company to source their collagen and working alongside Indiana’s 5th nationally ranked pork production industry to make this a statewide success story. He also gets into GeniPhys’ fundraising to date and their plans for refining the manufacturing process, adding talent to their team and what’s ahead as they grow and scale. 

27. Breaking down silos

Monday Jul 10, 2023

Monday Jul 10, 2023

Analyzing the performance of publicly traded companies provides unique insight into what’s happening in the global market and a view into what could be ahead for both public and private companies. That’s certainly true in agbioscience with public companies including John Deere, Case, Corteva, Elanco and many more reporting quarterly results. Joining us today is an expert in analyzing public company performance. Kristen Owen is Executive Director, Equity Research at Oppenheimer - a full-service brokerage and investment bank.  Kristen gets into what an equity researcher does, her focus on agbioscience (hint: it’s expansive) and big trends that are emerging in our current economic cycle. She also talks about allocating capital where it can make a difference, informing investment decisions and the application of technologies in other spaces to drive agbioscience innovation forward. In a time where inflation is high, supply chains are flimsy and challenges loom, agbioscience is finding the opportunity for new technologies and innovation in the space.   How does Kristen see this cycle of innovation driving forward? Kristen sees opportunity for mature technologies, finding scale and moving from single-opportunity innovation to being multi-faceted solutions. She also talks plant science, sustainability and continuing to do more with less.  Lastly, she talks about other industries shaping the future of agbioscience and vice versa, acquistions and what’s ahead for our industry. 

Monday Jul 03, 2023

About 17% of global food production goes to waste according to the World Economic Forum. It’s a massive challenge, and one Indiana startup is bringing new technology to preserve food, reduce waste … and even improve taste. It’s an incredible story of science and innovation. Today we are joined by True Essence Foods’ Head of IP & Licensing Simran Trana. She gets into her experience in private and public sectors, working with entrepreneurs and her passion for coming for the work being done at True Essence Foods.   How do you create truly tasty food and do it sustainably? Simran talks about True Essence Foods’ focus on preserving texture, flavor and consistency of foods through their technology and removing “off-flavors” to eliminate sharp bites that can be unpleasant to eat. In a world where food insecurity is a macro challenge, she also examines the role of technology to connect food supply with food demand.   Simran looks ahead to how food companies can leverage innovation to do what they already do, better, and what’s ahead for True Essence Foods.    

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