Loaded questions, slippery slopes, and hasty generalizations.
That is about all I remember from Ms. Huba from Cuba's 10th grade English class.
Don't these logical fallacies annoy the pants off you? Then why does this pretty much sum up every piece of info we are fed by the media?
Believe you me my friends, Agriculture is one of the most misunderstood industries in America today. Which is why this blog was started in the first place! But I digress...
In the December issue of Southern Farmer, I read an editorial that really hit home. Pam Golden titled it, "Sustainable agriculture? It's your farm" and friends I just couldn't resist writing my own version of it here.
Sustainable agriculture is a loaded word. It means several things to people and nothing to others. Does it mean organic? Does it mean environmentally friendly? Does it mean small farm?
I could go on and on and on about this, but I won't. I want you, the world out there, to realize that this word means exactly what it sounds like it means. To sustain means to support, to supply with necessities, to nourish.
SUPPORT: making a profit on our farm puts us in the realm of "KING CORN" and "FOOD INC" like we're the bad guys because our farm happens to be our business. Making a profit is what businesses do. Agriculture is a business. If you like living in a 1st world country, then I suggest you stop taking offense at this simple fact. Our farm financially supports 4 families. It is our passion, our livelihood, and thank you Lord---it pays our bills.
SUPPLY WITH NECESSITIES: The crops we grow literally feed the world, not just the foodies. Remember! Wheat, corn, peanuts, soybeans are what most food is made up of and is what most people around the world live off of. Like it or not, that is 2010. Most of the world doesn't live off $3/cup yogurt and fair trade coffee.
NOURISH: Farmers were the first environmentalists. They will always nourish their crops and their land. They take great and painful measures to protect their greatest resources of soil and water. Please, consider this: If the land and water were SO abused by agriculture as the media wants people to believe....how would we continue to be able to provide the safe, affordable and abundant food supply to the US that we do? Why does the earth continue to give us what we need? Because she is nourished and protected by those who tend to her.
So by golly, I think I've pretty much signed us up for a sustainable farm! GO TEAM FARMERS!
Please please please....promise me you'll think. Promise me you won't get on the slippery slope with a pair of skis and fly to the bottom of the hill believing everything along the way. Support American farmers, big and small. Organic and conventional. Sustainable and sustainable :)