Andy Hanacek

As the staff ofThe National Provisionerput this April 2009 issue to bed and sent it to press, I had the great fortune of attending the 10th Annual Thermal Processing of Ready-to-Eat Meat Products Short Course offered by The Ohio State University Meat Science Department in Columbus, Ohio. It’s an annual course focusing on both the food safety and food quality aspects of thermal processing, as well as engineering and microbiology best practices for ensuring those aspects.

I had the pleasure of speaking with several great colleagues at this seminar and during networking events at day’s end. Lynn Knipe, extension processed meat specialist at The Ohio State University, and Bob Rust, retired professor emeritus in the Department of Animal Sciences at Iowa State, were two of those colleagues who spent the time discussing industry issues with me.

I explained to them the strategic modifications we’ve made to our editorial policies that focus heavily on what our readers want to see and hear. I also talked to them about our newest forays into the multimedia realm, and how we believe this avenue is bringing our readership added value.

And the floodgates opened. Lynn and Bob began to rattle off idea after idea, a train of “I heard about this” suggestions for potential stories or ventures in which The National Provisioner might have interest. I mentioned our Webinars series on our Web site and how we’re building that foundation, and the wheels began to turn in both their heads about the potential for harnessing that medium and bringing knowledge to our readership. That’s coming sooner than later, I told them, so be ready for it.

As I headed to the airport that Thursday, I thought how great it is that we have readers and sources who get excited about helping us bring the most qualified, most interesting information to the industry, whether via traditional print or new technologies.

We crave this type of feedback, and in our new partnership-focused strategy, our ears are wide open, waiting for any suggestions you might have about our coverage, our delivery mechanisms or stories that you think the industry should know about.

We may be in the driver’s seat of this media vehicle, but we rely upon your navigation to guide us toward the destinations you want to reach.

It is as much your Provisioner as it is ours. Never feel apprehensive about chipping in your thoughts.