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Monday, January 10, 2011

Industrialized Farming

If a teacher walked to the front of the classroom and took to scribbling notes in chalk on a blackboard, I'd be thinking, "Where is the technology and advancement?"

If a doctor walked in to your patient room armed with only a stethoscope and a note pad, I'd be thinking, "Where is the technology and advancement?"

If an architect walked in with drawings in pencil and hand calculated measurements, I'd be thinking, "Where is the technology and advancement?"

At school, I expect my information to be downloaded onto a laptop and presented on a large screen complete with figures and pictures. At the hospital, I expect my health to be evaluated by top of the line testing equipment and multiple options. At the architect's office, I expect to see the drawings and figures in 3-dimension with fancy imagery and amazing detail.

My generation expects a lot of technology to be involved in our every day lives.

I guess that is why I have trouble when people don't have the same expectations or at least display a reasonable level of acceptance when talking about food production.

While recently visiting with a friend of mine, who opposes modern agricultural practices and the idea of industrialized farming, I was reminded of my more realistic expectations of technology in agriculture .

She's right, family farmers utilize a lot of modern techniques that help improve their yields and feed more people while using less land to do so. Industrialized farming also provides better ways to conserve the land and practice more sustainable farming techniques. Modern agricultural technology provides for more efficient use of natural resources and overall increased production to feed a hungry world. What I don't understand is what exactly she opposes.

I don't expect my mail to be delivered by horseback.

I don't even expect half of my mail to be delivered by paper.

I don't expect my food to be produced like it was 50 years ago.

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