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The Sequel: Pesticide looneys and conspiracy theorists

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Crop protection chemicals and GMOs -- some readers just don't get it.

I was not surprised to see so many Web site readers respond negatively to recent Delta Farm Press columns defending pesticides and biotechnology. Writing about GMOs and chemicals typically draws a large crowd of dissenters.

Rest assured, I read each response, thoroughly dissecting point and counterpoint, mulling over every admonition and each expression of righteous indignation. Afterwards I could think of only one thing to say.

“Come on people! You can do better than this!”

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One hopelessly propagandized person wrote, “China, who purchases a large quantity of corn, has refused to purchase this year because of its GMO status. Now farmers who have these crops are (affected) because they can’t sell them. The current battle now is should these seed companies be held liable because farmers can’t sell them. It all goes back to pesticides. Research GMO and the companies that make them. Your point of view is misinformed. Do some more research.”

According to my research on USDA’s Web site, which is just a click away for anyone wishing to be conversant in agricultural trade, overall U.S. corn exports have increased by 300 million bushels since the beginning of the year. And just so you’ll know, corn producers typically don’t export corn to China, U.S. traders do.

Then there is this mess of nonsense, obviously from the organic community. “It would seem that ignoring the scientific evidence of the impact to humans from endocrine disrupting ag chemicals, that ignoring the scientific research showing impact to humans from the cancers and immune diseases these and other ag chemicals cause and even ignoring the yield data, showing NO yield increases and in most cases LOWER yields from GMO crops you, the Penton Press Group continue to further the agenda of corporate chemical America. It is sad...... and criminal. But congratulations are in order: you are now fully, legally, accomplices to their crimes.”

I have not seen reputable research that would support any of the claims made by this reader when crops protection products are used according to label directions. That aside, to suggest that the modern farming enterprise works outside the limits of law is nothing short of preposterous.

It makes one wonder. Do most people really comprehend the urgent task that farmers face – to produce without fail, enough food to sustain all of humanity day upon day, year upon year, decade after decade, across extremes of geography, weather and unfortunately, growing radicalism and regulation?

Do they understand that banning GMOs and pesticides would be catastrophic? Suppose millions are left starving to advance this grand concept? What could possibly be more criminal?

Discuss this Blog Entry 1

on May 30, 2014

There are always extremes. Your side has them too and maybe that's what you are refusing to see, maybe because you are on the extreme side of the issue. I do not believe there is supporting evidence that the lack of GMO and pesticides would starve millions or even thousands. It hasn't been around long enough to become a longstanding player in the agriculture field in ways that need to ban conventional hybrid seeds. On the contrary, if good conservation practices and integrity in communities would be used, the hungry in poorer countries than ours would be helped much more than with GMO developments. Certainly a hot dog in the hands of a hungry child is better than nothing and even though not as healthy as a grilled chicken breast, it will be received with gratefulness. However, that doesn't mean that hot dogs are the best choice for poor countries or what informed consumers want to buy.
So while the big ag gets bigger and chemical companies get more power over crop (or hot dog) ownership, consumers who are serious about what they eat will only distance themselves further from what appears to be an agenda against consumer driven quality standards.
While degrading comments about those who differ does bring some good banter, hype, and emotional fervor into the equation that I will not be offended at, I can hardly wonder why some take the same approaches to criminalize you. That premise of distancing big ag from the consumer is kind of the usual and probably will always get the same response.
I invite you to read up on the sensible arguments against GMO's. The invitation of government invasion the GMO industry has brought about and the power struggles of wealthy companies seeking seed monopolies hasn't seemed to benefit small farmers and is not how the farming communities have succeeded in American history nor is it what the concerned public health seeking crowd is wanting.
There's a reason why there are concerned people making investigations for themselves since the FDA has not made good choices for them in favor of pharmaceuticals. Quality food is alway at it's premium when the choice is in the hands of informed consumers. Take that away and you have what we have today in modern American farming, GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD that benefits chemical companies, guarantees more high tech chemical industry jobs, and furthers world powers of seed technology. Can you explain how that builds confidence in consumers?
I think consumers are being fair when they ask the right questions..... where is my food coming from? What is in my food? How is it grown? This is why small farmers like myself have a chance at a niche market of producing the traditional good quality foods. These age old heirlooms that genetic modification has tried to archive into history are being kept alive for those who want healthy foods like what used to be grown. See for yourself where the small farm has gone.......
Open, honest transparancy is all they are asking for and is so often what big ag and the chemical companies have a hard time producing. I believe that if there was as much effort and research put into organic practices as GMO and its chemical counterparts, we could feed the world as much in a superior way, both in food quality and quantity. And at a much greater benefit to the conservation of land and water. But that is perhaps not the agenda of the chemical companies.
And by the way, you haven't busted these "myths" that I've posted to you before........

1. The integrity question of the coalition between gmo developing companies and the US government agencies that approve them.
2. The intense relationship between gmo's and the need for more herbicides and pesticides.
3. The narrow margin of difference between organic yields versus gmo yields.
4. The moral degradation of "intellectual property" ownership.
5. The corruption of a greedy system that takes no responsibility for pollination drift.
6. The system of political power that creates a superpower to control crop production around the world.
7. The moral danger of empowering a government to create a banana with a vaccine.
If you want more information on that banana, talk to Travis Miller from Texas A & M.
Think about it........

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