Today we are supposed to “Occupy the Food Supply” and show the “evil” corporations that they don’t belong in the food system.
Here are my quick thoughts on the matter:
1)I hope you occupy the food supply every day because otherwise you would starve to death or become severely malnourished.
2)Please don’t bash corporate ag because you in turn are insulting my family. I don’t call your great-grandparents, grandparents, dad or mom names so don’t do it to me. My family’s farm is a corporation, I don’t think we have any less of a right to be here than a sole proprietorship farm or a Limited Liability Company farm.
3)Beauty of our America’s food system is diversity and choice. I won’t tell you what to eat or buy because that’s your choice. I just ask you show me the same courtesy.
Hope you are occupying the food supply today and eating whatever you want to!
When I was in 5th grade there was a bully who pulled my hair every day in the line after recess. Since the administrators weren’t doing anything about it my dad told me I needed to handle it myself. He said, “Marie, next time she pulls your hair turn around and slug her.” So the next time she pulled my hair I turned around, hit her and called her a word that means female dog. The unfortunate part was that I did it in front of a duty teacher so I got a half day of detention and I wasn’t supposed to say naughty words so I got my mouth washed out with soap. But she never bullied me again. Problem solved.
I thought by the time I was 26 I would be done dealing with bullies, that was one of the perks of being an adult. But I was terribly wrong. In fact the bullies are worse now because it’s frowned upon to punch them. They spread misconceptions lacking sound science through main stream media and then use ill-formed policy based in fear to get their way.
Just last week Chipotle broadcasted their inaccurate perception of a modern-day “conventional” hog farm during the Grammy’s. Then the same week McDonald’s gave into pressure from the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to quit purchasing pork products from farms that use gestation crates.
Bullying is happening in Oregon. Thirty-five miles away from my home a group of anti-chemical zealots are attacking small woodland owners over their right to use chemicals on their trees. They are making malicious claims that they are being poisoned to the verge of sickness by Atrazine & 2, 4D. When results of urine analysis came back it was determined that there was no Atrazine in their system & the levels of 2, 4D were NO higher than the average US citizen, which are insignificant in the terms of toxicity. Of course any chemical is lethal at high doses including Sodium Chloride aka salt.
I recently read an op-ed about the Chipotle ad by one of my favorite agvocates & writers Blake Hurst then read an another blog piece criticizing him. He responded with “And I am damn tired of being treated like public enemy number one in the New York Times.”
Amen Blake. I am tired of being bullied by a handful organizations who lack sound scientific theories and want to use precautionary principles to create policy & regulations.
There’s one way to stop it. With EVERY farmer, rancher & forester telling their story as much as possible. I don’t care if you use tweet it, facebook it, blog it, email it, pen write it or speak it, just please tell your story and why you do what you do every day.
Like it or not there are people who want to eradicate us but we can end the bullying with verbal punches full of science based logic, reasoning and common sense.
I am a minority, not because I am women or a proud card-carrying member of the Cherokee nation.
I am a farmer. Less than 2% of the US population have my livelihood.
That’s less than the population of Native Americans, African-Americans, Asian Americans and Caucasian Americans
If I remember correctly from my history classes many laws were passed to give equal rights to at least 3 out of the 4 groups mentioned above.
What is so wrong with laws passing to protect people of a minority group who’s end product eventually feeds the world?
In 1993, the Oregon legislature understood that there was a rural & urban divide. Oregon’s agriculturally rich Willamette Valley is in the midst of metropolitan Oregon. Tthey needed to do something to protect farmers, ranchers & foresters rights that are “a generally accepted, reasonable and prudent methods,” because more urban folks were moving into the countryside and they wouldn’t necessarily understand the natural practices of the area. This is why they passed Oregon’s Right to Farm and Forest Act.
This law protects me from radical groups who see my natural & generally accepted practices as a nuisance and wish to end it. Many of these same groups claim to love farmers & farming, however they typically advocate for one way of farming only. Which usually limits others’ choices. What is fair about that? At least Oregon’s law protects them too. I believe that’s equality.
Our economy is struggling enough and our world population is growing. To limit any modern or progressive agriculture is a shame and should be frowned upon. Agriculture as a whole, not just limited to production ag, is vital to the United States economy, independent in food & fuel production. In Oregon, agriculture accounts for 15% of all economic activity, and in 2009 is credited with adding more than $22 billion to Oregon’s net state product.
My ultimate question in life is “Why can’t we farm & let farm?” Why can’t some of us continue to ethically progress in agriculture as the environment and economics see fit, while others prefer to stay in 1915? There’s room for all of us. As a whole we are already a minority.
Filed under Agriculture, Conventional, Economy, Environment, Farming, Forestry, Green Agenda, Livelihood, Oregon, Organic, Rural
“In five years all farms will be ran by an iPad.” This was spoke by Dr. Jay Lehr of the Heartland Institute during his keynote at the American AgriWomen annual meeting in Wichita, KS.
I believe it.
This morning, my dad and I created Dropbox accounts so we could share an excel document for our unsold grass seed inventory. Then we both downloaded the app “Docs to Go”. This app allowed us to access from our iPhones or Ipads our Dropbox accounts where we stored our unsold inventory spreadsheet. This way my dad is able to view his inventory anywhere and anytime and the app allows him to edit a lot of seed when he contracts or sells it. We haven’t put it into full effect yet but I think it is going to be awesome!
Other recent technology improvements on the farm include a purchase of the newest version of Quickbooks that will allow my mom and I to work it it at the same time at different computers. The new software has not been delivered yet so to see how well it works is yet to be determined. Most technology on farms these days, including ours, have the tractors and sprayers equipped with GPS and autosteer and our combines have GPS and yield monitors.
Advancements in technology are fantastic and allows our farm to have increased efficiencies but just like face to face communication some days you can’t beat a pencil and paper to figure it out. Then put it on your excel spreadsheet.
In today’s society consumers are bombarded with Organic Propaganda. The Organic Food Movement, who doesn’t really care what your family eats, has done a great job of marketing organic food, mostly with scare tactics. It often times aligns itself with campaigns that create the illusion that it is healthier or safer for you, which is simply false.
Four of these choices are either associated with a health condition or simply a better way to eat...organic does not fall into those categories.
Organic food is no more nutritious for you than conventionally produced food. In 2009, the UK’s Food Standard Agency commissioned a comprehensive review of articles and studies over the last 50 years comparing Organic and Conventionally produced food. The conclusion found that there was no significant if any nutritional differences in the products and no additional health benefits from eating organic food. Most people can agree with this because using common sense and some basic science one realizes that for example an apple is apple…you cannot alter the molecules that make an apple by using a different method of production.
A misconception that is often associated with Organic is that they do not use pesticides. News Flash: They DO use pesticides. Some pesticides used are the same ones used in conventional methods and others are not. The difference in pesticides is whether they are synthetically produced or naturally occurring, not whether its safer or not. A pesticide is meant to get rid a pest that is doing harm and are only used when necessary in any type of farming. However Organic pesticide usage is not recorded or regulated by the government like conventional usage is.
Leaders in the Organic Food Movement acknowledge that pesticides are used when asked. However they often to tote that Organic food has less pesticide residue. Every year the Environmental Working Group publishes an article telling the public which produce contains the most pesticide residue also known as The Dirty Dozen. However they are not very upfront about their methods nor do they explain how pesticide residues are measured on food. Residues are measured with the chronic reference dose, which is established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), meaning the acceptable level intake one can have without having effects throughout their lifetime. A study recently published in April in the Journal of Toxicology finds that “dirtiest” produce had levels of pesticides 1,000 times lower than the chronic reference dose. That means it is very safe to eat.
If Organic food has no additional nutritional benefit and is no more safe to eat than conventional then the cultivation methods must be better for the environment. Again a misconception with advances such as No-till, GPS, and advanced breeding techniques conventional agriculture overall impact, some argue, is less than organic methods. Often times organic methods require more tillage, more applications of chemicals and sometimes more land.
Diversity is what makes the agriculture world go around. Organic has a place in the world. However it is no more superior than any other method of farming. The Organic Food Movement has marketed it as such because that’s what marketing is. Convincing consumers that one product is better than the other. All to increase profits, which is ironic for a movement that’s roots are based in Socialism…but I’ll save that post for another time. I applaud them for wanting to make more money. All consumers have freedom of choice and we must all choose what is best for our families and pocketbooks not because someone scared you into it.