There are several recurring themes among some of the most interesting people I cross paths with in agriculture. One of the most fun is that many of us never set out with a particular role or job in mind, but instead just rolled with the opportunities in front of us.

The other is travel; not just seeing neat new places and spending a week, but real travel — living and working abroad, or as Ray Dowbenko did for many years, commuting between China and home.

Dowbenko’s career has been a fascinating one (and is far from done). He has worked to bring about real change and understanding of soil nutrients and their use, and also has played a role in agriculture’s advancement in several countries a long way from home.

In this episode of Agronomy Geeks, “just Ray” joins me to share the twists and turns of a career arc that eventually landed him in soil science and working in agriculture. He answers my questions about agriculture adapting to new rules surrounding nutrient use, where he feels he’s made an impact as a human, and shares some of his favourite places to visit.

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