Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Family Farmers Stand Up Against Elites

Farmers are starting to speak out against the attacks from point of view journalism, celebrity authors, and novelty film makers that have cleverly crafted arguments against 'industrial' farms, while stealthily undermining the practices of most family farmers.

The Omnivore’s Delusion: Against the Agri-intellectuals

By Blake Hurst- The American July 30 2009

"He quieted and asked me what kind of farming I do. I told him, and when he asked if I used organic farming, I said no, and left it at that. I didn’t answer with the first thought that came to mind, which is simply this: I deal in the real world, not superstitions, and unless the consumer absolutely forces my hand, I am about as likely to adopt organic methods as the Wall Street Journal is to publish their next edition by setting the type by hand. He was a businessman, and I’m sure spends his days with spreadsheets, projections, and marketing studies. He hasn’t used a slide rule in his career and wouldn’t make projections with tea leaves or soothsayers. He does not blame witchcraft for a bad quarter, or expect the factory that makes his product to use steam power instead of electricity, or horses and wagons to deliver his products instead of trucks and trains. But he expects me to farm like my grandfather, and not incidentally, I suppose, to live like him as well. He thinks farmers are too stupid to farm sustainably, too cruel to treat their animals well, and too careless to worry about their communities, their health, and their families...The most delicious irony is this: the parts of farming that are the most “industrial” are the most likely to be owned by the kind of family farmers that elicit such a positive response from the consumer. Corn farms are almost all owned and managed by small family farmers. "

Farm official: Elitists’ efforts would mean more hungry people
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Agrinews Online

“The elitists have been able to put in place zealots who are causing proposed regulations to come down the pike that will affect production agriculture more than ever,” he said. “They are trying to carry out their concepts, their ideas, of what needs to be done to forge what they perceive as a lifestyle that everybody should participate in.”

Attacks on the toolboxes that help farmers increase productivity are at the top of the list. A new review of atrazine — just reviewed in 2006 — the banning of carbamates, nutrient application rules and proposed spray drift controls are some of the attempts by elitists to impose their will on the nation’s food producers.The controversial issues of global warming and climate change and international indirect land use are issues on which elitists are focusing as a way of imposing more regulations on production agriculture.

“Tools that production agriculture has used are being removed from our toolbox,” Weinzierl said.

Food, Inc., discussion draws 50 in Fergus Falls

Agrinews- Dec 10,2009

"It's not telling the whole story," said the crop consultant and former farmer. "I think it was quite biased. I am an advocate for agriculture and I support all of agriculture. But this isn't telling the whole story."

Farmer Cynthia Johnson agreed.

"I substitute teach in the school and ag is not painted a beautiful picture in any of the textbooks," she said.

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