S2E22: s2e22 Kyle Barnett - Ponic Jobs, Podcasting & Paying It Forward

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Episode Summary

Join Harry Duran, host of Vertical Farming Podcast, as he welcomes to the show founder of Ponic Jobs and co-host of the CropTalk Podcast, Kyle Barnett. Kyle is currently serving as Account Manager in the horticulture division at WestRock, focusing on helping growers create superior packaging, labels and merchandising solutions. In this episode, Harry and Kyle discuss the varying facets of ponics, from deep water culture and NFTs to vertical farming and aquaponics. They talk about the vital role distribution plays in the AgTech industry, what inspired Kyle to create the Ponic Jobs website, as well as his collaboration with CropTalk Media. His podcast segment, Kyle Talks AgTech, focuses on CEA, vertical farms, greenhouse technology as well as industry leaders.

Episode Sponsor

Ceres Greenhouse Solutions

Key Takeaways

  • 03:22 – Harry welcomes to the show Kyle Barnett, who shares his personal journey to AgTech
  • 12:14 – How Kyle’s love of cooking inspired him to pursue a career in agriculture and the importance Kyle places on pivoting
  • 20:42 – The work Kyle did with the Farm Tech Society and the inspiration to create the site, Ponic Jobs
  • 29:22 – Educating future generations on AgTech and how Kyle got involved in the CropTalk Podcast
  • 38:30 – How Kyle has grown as a podcast host and what excites him the most about the potential and the future of AgTech
  • 45:30 – Kyle speaks to the work he is doing at WestRock
  • 52:37 – A little known fact about Kyle that most people don’t know
  • 54:51 – Harry thanks Kyle for joining the show and let’s listeners know where they can connect with him

Tweetable Quotes

“My segment [on the CropTalk Podcast] was ‘Kyle Talks AgTech.’ And it’s been great. I’ve had over thirty-five episodes now and it’s really given me a lot of clarity into what the industry needs. As I said in the beginning, it’s been an eclectic journey but I’ve been so grateful.” (10:41)

“A common theme I’ve seen is the idea that ‘if you grow it, they will come’ is not a reality, unfortunately. You need to sell your food and then grow it. So, if I had one piece of advice for anyone looking to get into this is know your market and know where your food’s going, because we’re working with a perishable.” (15:23))

“I saw some of the most amazing ingenuity by a lot of these growers. And I saw people prosper that you might not expect because they pivoted.” (17:57)

“I like aquaponics. I fell in love with it because of the idea of it and the closed loop, but it’s a tough one.” (26:51)

“When working with anyone in sales I think it’s really about trust and fostering a relationship. And if you can develop a friendship out of it, more power to ya.” (33:45)

“If I was gonna give any advice to someone starting a podcast it would be to remember who your podcast is about. It’s not about you, it’s about your guest and shedding the spotlight on that guest.” (38:59)

Links Mentioned

Ponic Jobs Website

Kyle’s Podcast

Kyle’s LinkedIn

Farm Tech Society

CropWalk Website

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