​3 tips for a successful agricultural translation



When it comes to agribusiness, Latin America is a goldmine that is waiting for you.

But do you know how to penetrate that valuable market?

If you’re an agripreneur, farmer, or just somebody in the AG field and want to do business with Latin Americans, don’t miss this short read to know what you should take into account when translating your materials.

1) Machine translation or human translation?

Repeat after me: “machine translation will never be the best solution.”

Yes, I know. You probably use these tools in your daily life. And I’m sure you didn’t know that MT tools are the worst nightmare of every linguist.

Can you keep a little secret? I use MT too when I want to learn the meaning of a word/phrase in a given language I’m learning.

But the point is this: relying on uncle Google (or on human translators without the adequate qualifcations for that matter) to have your AG materials translated into Spanish is a big “NO” (I mean, a huge “no” here).

In case you are wondering why just take a look at this:

If this text was about some funny fruit race, I’m sure of red competitors would cross the finish line first. But this is not about a running event.

This is plant anatomy 101. And in a technical text in Spanish, “runners” are always “estolones.” Period.

2) What materials should I translate?

This should be the first thing you ask yourself before looking for the right linguist.

Remember that Spanish is the third most used language over the Internet.

Thus, if you want to increase your reach among Latin Americans and still have your materials in English only, a great start point could be translating your website, blog, app/software o social media posts.

That way, you could boost your customers’ engagement, who will now perceive your product or service as more accessible. And after that, it’s only time before you cast a love spell on every Latino.

However, if you already have all these materials in Spanish, then think carefully what you should translate next to broaden your horizons.

Ask your professional linguist for advice to check if your communication strategy will work as expected, and plan your steps to make your Spanish translations meaningful and coherent.

3) Into which Spanish should I translate?

From Argentina all the way up to Mexico, there are as many varieties of Spanish as Spanish-speaking countries.

Yes. That’s right. And even if Latinos understand each other to a great extent, you need better than a fairly “intelligible” text.

Castaña de cajú, nuez de la India, merey, marañón, cajuil, anacardo… they all refer to Anacardium occidentale (cashew nut) in different countries.

So, basically, overcoming the language barrier does not simply imply transferring your message from A to B. Your linguist should make sure that the target reader will feel comfortable with your materials. That is, that their variety of Spanish is being used throughout your document.

For that,  a lot of research must be done in terms of cultural appropriateness (values, beliefs, ideals and so on) but also, and most importantly, in terms of AG terminology.

A bad localized product or service won’t call your customers to action.

And what does that mean? That your efforts won’t generate the expected ROI and you will have wasted a unique business opportunity.

Remember: establishing a clear communication strategy is key to successfully penetrate Latin American markets.

For that, you need to identify your target audience first and then find the right professional to be your voice in Spanish…


And Semillar can help you achieve all that!

Did you find this article useful? You can find more related tips in my Free Guide. Come on, don’t be shy and take a look at it!

About me

Hi! My name is Soledad Agüero and I’m the founder of Semillar Translations.

Semillar combines my two passions, translation and agriculture, to offer you tailored linguistic services in Spanish that will make your business grow and thrive in Latin American soil.

How do I do it? By crafting quality translations with a pinch of insider’s knowledge that will make you stand out from the competition.

We can start working together right away! Let’s talk about your project, so I can get a better idea of your business needs.


I’m here to help you!

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1 year ago

Excellent post, Sole!

I’m sure it is very useful for those who are not familiar with the translation world, in the agriculture or any other field. Thanks for keep sharing value!

1 year ago

You’re wright! I had to do a post editing job of NMT and there were some difficult paragraphs that the little dwarf inside could not guess well.

Caro Echeverria
Caro Echeverria
1 year ago

Super interesting! These steps can be applied on any text of all entrepreneurs trying to reach their Spanish speaking audience.
Thanks for your awareness on the topic, Sole!!

1 year ago

Great content! Super high-quality! Keep it up! 🙂


SOLEDAD AGÜERO, Office: Calle 5 S/N, San Rafael, Mendoza (Argentina) 5603, Email: info@semillar.com, Ph.: +549 260 484 83 06

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