I realize this is a whole new concept to most, but
science and technology — not emotions — are the path to the future of feeding
the world. Emotions, plus a buck, will not even get you a coffee in most gas
stations around the nation today.
First off, you could fit all of the Americans who
don’t raise food and actually care about feeding the rest of the world into a
Yugo. (Do they still make those things?)
Only those in the farming population truly care
about feeding the world because we want to use it as a justification for
implementing the latest in technology to produce more food with fewer resources.
News flash: Consumers only care about what affects their family.
I recently had a great radio discussion with Melissa
Reed whose family operates Hildebrand Farms Dairy in Kansas. Five years ago
they built a bottling plant at the dairy and have been direct marketing milk to
Our discussion was about what has happened in the
past 6 months regarding public perception of GMO feeds. Overwhelmingly, the
consumer is asking if the cows they milk eat GMO feeds. Yes, they do, because they
understand the value of scientific progress.
The family dairy reached its tipping point when they
not only lost some of their customers, but they also lost one of their retail
I have been quick to say “we simply need to educate
the consumer to the right way, and not cave to their misconceptions about the
science and technology.” It now seems easy for me to say, sitting here on the
sidelines where I sell all of my farm commodities through normal distribution
I believe it is time we lead a global discussion
about the best approach for the future of feeding and caring for the planet.
Where the discussion is now, we are simply playing defense in our marketing and
trying to buy a little more time in the minds of the consumers.
When a consumer asks you the question, “Can you get
me a chicken wing without killing the chicken?” how will you respond?