Resource Magazine — March/April 2013
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from the President
Tony Kajewski

What we all have in common

At this year’s AETC meeting in Kansas City, Missouri, I had the honor of presenting ASABE’s annual AE50 Awards to representatives of a variety of companies for their recent, innovative products. Like our Society, the products covered many areas. There were new tractors and portable food analyzers. New material handling systems and apps for smart phones. Automated control systems and new spray nozzles. However, all the award winners had one thing in common: Efficiency. All of these products improve the efficiency of production and promote efficient use of resources. AETC was also the setting for the first-ever Silver and Gold AE50 Award presentations. Working with AEM, we chose ten outstanding innovations from the two previous years of AE50 winners. At AETC, we presented six Silver awards and four Gold awards for these great products. Please see the list of winners below.

The theme of this issue is Urban Agriculture and, as several of the contributors point out, the world’s population will hit nine billion by the middle of this century. That’s a big number, so here’s another way to think about it: We will need to produce more food in the first half of this century than we did in the previous 100 centuries combined! Along with food production, clean water will become critical. And renewable sources must supply a major part of our energy. Agricultural and biological engineers can provide solutions to these challenges, and we’ll do it by improving the efficiency of our global food system.

The contributors to this special issue have a wide variety of ideas, and they also have something in common: To feed the world, the world will need more of us—more agricultural and biological engineers. So encourage bright young people to join our profession, as many already have. And work with your schools to promote science and engineering. Many of us participated in E-week in February, but promoting our profession is a year-round program. The need for agricultural and biological engineers will continue to grow as the world population grows. Together, we provide food, fiber, renewable energy, and clean water in a healthy environment. And we do it efficiently.