Thursday, July 8, 2010

A Hungry Planet

It's a hungry planet we live on. It always has been, hasn't it?

I wrote last year about how I taught about man's ability to produce food in my classes all my teaching career. The population curve is very flat until you get to the late 1800's when machinery became more mechanized and hybrid corn and variety selection became so intense.

A farmer sent me a new YouTube by BASF covering some of these changes in the past 50 to 2000 years. It's a good and quick snapshot of how farmers have provided our daily bread these many years and the challenges that lie ahead.

Some of the numbers stand out because there are so few farmers in this country today. One farmer easily provides enough total food for over 160 other people. The adaptation of technology has made it capable for one farmer to farm 2000 acres or more which has made our business very, very competitive.

I applaud you who make it on less or even a few acres. It's a love and dedication you don't find every day in every profession. Specialty agriculture is exciting but the bulk of daily commodities comes from the hands of a few compared to when I was a child.

I used BASF's new Corvus corn herbicide to protect my corn crop. It has done a good job and the corn looks very good. Many farmers are appling Headline fungicide today to protect many crops from disease which have exploded the past two weeks due to the weather and to take advantage of plant protection chemicals in today's crops. This is just one company of the major players who provide the crop protection products we use which are scrutinized like human medicines.

We had dinner with Eddie and Wilma from the Greene County Fairboard last night and talked about food and family. I can't have a conversation without food production coming up but that is my chosen profession. I love growing food and you and I profit from it.

Take a look at the short video and make your comments. There is a lot of untruth out there about farming but there is also a lot of truth for us to evaluate. Choose carefully who you listen to.

It is a hungry planet for sure but farmers work everyday to make our lives better. Many industries like BASF do, too.

Ed Winkle

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