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Frequent Contributor

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

How many of you bought into the "We're all going to run out of fuel and food" several years back? Do you think that biotechnology has helped or hurt rural America's economy and more specific it's farmers and ranchers? I contend without the ultra advancement of biotechnology's and the emergence/consolidation of mega input corporations that N. America would still be feeding itself comfortably and that in turn rural economies would be in far better shape than what we have now. I have never bought into the world is starving because of lack of food production. Rather, it is because of poorly run governments and in turn economic and logistical issues that create starvation. We have been duped into thinking more is better from the biotech / input giants that only garner more power and control not only here in the states but now on a global scale. It's a race to the bottom. I think about an interview I had while still in college regarding a summer internship with a local cooperative. The manager of the coop did the interview and one of his main questions to me was "What are your thoughts on biotechnology?" I still remember the look on his face when I told him how I thought long term I believed it could enable the farmer to produce even more of what we already had too much of at the time - grain. This was in the spring of 2001. I think he was dumb founded as he was only looking at it from the retailers side of the equation which was look at how much extra grain we could market and all the possibilities for new chemical and seed sales and of course why wouldn't it be food for the farmer if he produces more. Here is an interesting article written in June of 2002 that discusses the pro's and con's of biotechnology shortly after it started to take off.

 

https://academic.oup.com/bioscience/article/52/6/523/240347

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Honored Advisor

Re: FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Well, if biotechnology and other technologies keeps it`s promises to you individually and you consistently raise 300 bushel corn, then yes, you can slide right over a poor price.  ie 300 bushel X $3 is $900 per acre gross which allows a lot of froth to snag a profit.   If you buy the $300 seed, one-pass chemicals, but your planter is sitting in the shed with the rain falling down and pages on the calendar turning and you harvest 130 bushel corn with your $400,000 combine, that won`t be a story with a happy ending.   And I`m afraid reality is more closely aligned with the latter example...Mother Nature bats last.

 

Even today, there are posts about "What are we gonna do without Roundup???? Smiley Surprised"  and statements like "who`s gonna decide who starves???"  ...better question: who`s gonna decide who goes bankrupt???

 

But Republican or socialist, politicians that agree on nothing else all agree on cheap food, no administration wants to have rising food bills when they are in charge and food  hasn`t risen in real terms probably since the mid 70s    So we have a wink & nod bipartisan "cheap food policy".  

 

I look at the hog industry, how they fight with Peta and Concerned Citizens for Community Improvement that protests CAFOs.   How low would hog prices be if the industry "policed itself" and 5,000hd sites became 10,000hd sites and there was no limit to where and how many barns could be built?   These animal rights whackos, in a way supported hog prices.   Every pork producer should be a member   Smiley Happy

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