Published Photo

Michelle Infante-Casella
Agricultural Agent/Professor

On August 30, 2019, Agricultural Agent, Michelle Infante-Casella visited a residence in Deptford, New Jersey at the request of homeowner, Matthew Jacovelli. The visit was to determine if Mr. Jacovelli’s corn plant, growing in his flowerbed, was a Guinness World Record. Mr. Jacovelli counted 28 ears of corn growing on a single plant. However, when Agent Infante-Casella counted she verified 29 ears. In order to prove to Guinness this plant was in fact a world record, the Jacovelli’s videoed Infante-Casella counting the ears 4 times. In addition, the Agricultural Agent filled out a form with her credentials, her university’s website, her contact information and a description of the corn plant to be sent to Guinness. Agent Infante-Casella used her cell phone to take photos of the visit with the Jacovelli’s and daughter Jean Jacovelli used the Agent’s cell phone to have her be photographed with Matthew and Virginia Jacovelli and the 29-ear corn plant. The information, video and photographs were sent to Guinness officials and they approved the corn plant was indeed a world record (see The photo and story were published in at least 6 local and regional newspapers. The story also aired on 2 local television news stations (ABC news and CBS news, and one national news station using the photos from Agent Infante-Casella. The photo and story was published in the Philadelphia Inquirer on September 10, 2019 and can be found at It was also posted on the newsroom website for Rutgers University School of Environmental and Biological Sciences and the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station at and included the caption, ”The count of 29 ears was verified by Michelle Infante-Casella (L) who is joined by Virginia and Matthew Jacovelli”. This unique plant created an interesting circumstance that will never be forgotten by the Jacovelli Family and will always be remembered by Agent, Infante-Casella. Cooperative Extension work is never mundane and Agricultural Agents can never predict where their expertise will take them each day they walk into the office.