Consumer and producer education important | TSLN.com

Consumer and producer education important

Steve Paisley

I recently took a long-awaited vacation to Southern California with our family. Admittedly, mid-vacation while I was writing this article, the sights, sounds and experiences of our vacation were in my mind. I also might be attempting to block out the current financial situation, stock market report, and presidential discussion.

Being a Wyoming family, we decided to try and experience Disneyland, San Diego Wild Animal Park, and Sea World when there would be as few people as possible. We picked an October week when our boys had two days off of school, and ventured to the West Coast. While the crowds on weekdays were very light, the weekend crowds were pretty intimidating to our Wyoming crew. I was immediately reminded of one of my favorite descriptions of Wyoming from Garrison Keillor, who described Wyoming as “having roughly 500,000 people (currently somewhere around 515 K), and approximately 98,000 square miles of land. That would mean that if you spread everyone out equally, there would be about five people per square mile.” That was my best explanation for why I felt so claustrophobic in the middle of the weekend crowds. There were far too many unfamiliar people in my Wyoming-sized flight zone.

I mention this for one specific reason. After spending a week in California, I realized that many of my basic beliefs and natural tendencies were developed and nurtured growing up in Western Nebraska and Wyoming. While I believe that I am still able to function normally in society, I’m continually reminded that many of the things that I have grown up with – common understandings of the environment, animal husbandry and the issues associated with caring for animals – is completely foreign to a majority of the population.

As an industry, we talk a lot about educating the consumer. We also need to continue to educate ourselves not only on our production practices, but how we are perceived by the urban population.

I recently took a long-awaited vacation to Southern California with our family. Admittedly, mid-vacation while I was writing this article, the sights, sounds and experiences of our vacation were in my mind. I also might be attempting to block out the current financial situation, stock market report, and presidential discussion.

Being a Wyoming family, we decided to try and experience Disneyland, San Diego Wild Animal Park, and Sea World when there would be as few people as possible. We picked an October week when our boys had two days off of school, and ventured to the West Coast. While the crowds on weekdays were very light, the weekend crowds were pretty intimidating to our Wyoming crew. I was immediately reminded of one of my favorite descriptions of Wyoming from Garrison Keillor, who described Wyoming as “having roughly 500,000 people (currently somewhere around 515 K), and approximately 98,000 square miles of land. That would mean that if you spread everyone out equally, there would be about five people per square mile.” That was my best explanation for why I felt so claustrophobic in the middle of the weekend crowds. There were far too many unfamiliar people in my Wyoming-sized flight zone.

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I mention this for one specific reason. After spending a week in California, I realized that many of my basic beliefs and natural tendencies were developed and nurtured growing up in Western Nebraska and Wyoming. While I believe that I am still able to function normally in society, I’m continually reminded that many of the things that I have grown up with – common understandings of the environment, animal husbandry and the issues associated with caring for animals – is completely foreign to a majority of the population.

As an industry, we talk a lot about educating the consumer. We also need to continue to educate ourselves not only on our production practices, but how we are perceived by the urban population.

I recently took a long-awaited vacation to Southern California with our family. Admittedly, mid-vacation while I was writing this article, the sights, sounds and experiences of our vacation were in my mind. I also might be attempting to block out the current financial situation, stock market report, and presidential discussion.

Being a Wyoming family, we decided to try and experience Disneyland, San Diego Wild Animal Park, and Sea World when there would be as few people as possible. We picked an October week when our boys had two days off of school, and ventured to the West Coast. While the crowds on weekdays were very light, the weekend crowds were pretty intimidating to our Wyoming crew. I was immediately reminded of one of my favorite descriptions of Wyoming from Garrison Keillor, who described Wyoming as “having roughly 500,000 people (currently somewhere around 515 K), and approximately 98,000 square miles of land. That would mean that if you spread everyone out equally, there would be about five people per square mile.” That was my best explanation for why I felt so claustrophobic in the middle of the weekend crowds. There were far too many unfamiliar people in my Wyoming-sized flight zone.

I mention this for one specific reason. After spending a week in California, I realized that many of my basic beliefs and natural tendencies were developed and nurtured growing up in Western Nebraska and Wyoming. While I believe that I am still able to function normally in society, I’m continually reminded that many of the things that I have grown up with – common understandings of the environment, animal husbandry and the issues associated with caring for animals – is completely foreign to a majority of the population.

As an industry, we talk a lot about educating the consumer. We also need to continue to educate ourselves not only on our production practices, but how we are perceived by the urban population.

I recently took a long-awaited vacation to Southern California with our family. Admittedly, mid-vacation while I was writing this article, the sights, sounds and experiences of our vacation were in my mind. I also might be attempting to block out the current financial situation, stock market report, and presidential discussion.

Being a Wyoming family, we decided to try and experience Disneyland, San Diego Wild Animal Park, and Sea World when there would be as few people as possible. We picked an October week when our boys had two days off of school, and ventured to the West Coast. While the crowds on weekdays were very light, the weekend crowds were pretty intimidating to our Wyoming crew. I was immediately reminded of one of my favorite descriptions of Wyoming from Garrison Keillor, who described Wyoming as “having roughly 500,000 people (currently somewhere around 515 K), and approximately 98,000 square miles of land. That would mean that if you spread everyone out equally, there would be about five people per square mile.” That was my best explanation for why I felt so claustrophobic in the middle of the weekend crowds. There were far too many unfamiliar people in my Wyoming-sized flight zone.

I mention this for one specific reason. After spending a week in California, I realized that many of my basic beliefs and natural tendencies were developed and nurtured growing up in Western Nebraska and Wyoming. While I believe that I am still able to function normally in society, I’m continually reminded that many of the things that I have grown up with – common understandings of the environment, animal husbandry and the issues associated with caring for animals – is completely foreign to a majority of the population.

As an industry, we talk a lot about educating the consumer. We also need to continue to educate ourselves not only on our production practices, but how we are perceived by the urban population.

email steve paisley at spaisley@uwyo.edu