YouTube’s view count of “Consider the Bean” is over 30,000 and rising!
Views of the 1-minute video produced for the Canadian Centre for Agri-Food Research in Health and Medicine (CCARM) virtually exploded over the weekend. The dramatic increase, due in part to recent press coverage, received an added boost when the official Facebook page for “Mr. Bean” (a character portrayed by British actor Rowan Atkinson) also featured the video. The number of views increased to 16,000 on Friday, and over 30,000 by Monday.
Scientists at the Canadian Centre for Agri-Food Research in Health and Medicine (CCARM) were looking to attract attention to their display on the potential health benefits of pulse crops when they asked for help from the Communications and Media Services department at St. Boniface Hospital Research Centre. The results – a 5000-bean portrait of Mr. Bean and the subsequent video – have done that and more.
Dried beans, referred to as legumes or pulse crops, are actually the edible seeds that grow in pods on annual plants, bushes, or vines. They can be eaten fresh, sprouted, dried, and ground into flour. “They are also an interesting medium for portraiture” says Bill Peters, Communications Manager, who along with media technician Rob Blaich was responsible for creating the 20-by-30 inch portrait, as well as the 1-minute video. “The portrait is only one part of the display, and it is intended to draw the audience in. When we finished it, I knew we had something that could be leveraged into additional attention in social media, and so the video was born.”
CCARM will premiere the display in “Ag in the City”, an agriculture-related trade/product show organized by stakeholders within the Manitoba agriculture industry, March 16-18 at Winnipeg’s Forks Market.