Warning: I’m on my soapbox today.
Here’s an interesting read from the New York Times, titled “For Cows, Daughters Mean More Milk”. The article shares the results of a new study that finds “the amount of milk a cow produces is affected by the sex of her fetus.” Interesting, indeed – and I thank the New York Times for sharing this information. Here’s where my soapbox comes into play…As farmers, we are constantly learning new things – how to better care for our cows, how to produce better feed, how to better conserve our land, etc. There are literally thousands of studies being conducted throughout the world – all to help us make better food for the world! Food that is more affordable, more safe, more palatable, more nutritious. And it all takes science!
I’m the product of a multi-generational farm and have personally witnessed or heard from my grandfather about the many advancements my family has made on our dairy farm. From the early stages of pasteurization, milking machines and milk trucks to evolving barn stalls and harvesting equipment to no-till seed and genetically modified crops – all of these evolutions came from the result of many years of science and research.
Science in agriculture is not bad! It’s good!
Science has helped our farms be more efficient, productive, safe, sustainable and responsible than ever before! If my grandfather was still with us, he’d be amazed at how comfortable, productive and healthy our cows are today. Don’t get me wrong, he provided his cows with impeccable care, I’m sure. But we know so much more today about the dairy cow than they ever did back then. He’d also be impressed that our milk exceeds the highest of standards and regulations – much higher than those set in his day. And he’d be ecstatic to know we would no longer have to spray pesticides to save our crops, and how we rarely have to disturb the soil in order to plant our crops. And he’d be dumb-founded to hear that we do all of that on a dime, like he did. These advancements – whether made in a laboratory or in a field – have helped us become the industry and nation we are today. And those advancements – they are all in response to the consumers’ needs and wants.
So if you ever hear someone criticize agriculture’s production methods or speak out against the use of science in food production, please ask them to reach out to a real farmer for the real story. And if you so dare, please read this opinion piece that was published in the Huffington Post. I recognize it was written by Monsanto and that itself may offend some people, but I think you will find the references and resources useful in combatting the misinformation and counter-productive opinions towards modern production agriculture.
Thanks for listening to my rant. I’m done now. For today, anyway.