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Posts Tagged ‘Ranchers’

Happiness…Through the Actions of a Child

Making It To The Stump Was A Start

Happy – characterized by or indicative of pleasure, contentment, or joy

Last week, while I was heading someplace, I was listening to John Stossel, on my XM, “What Really Makes People Happy.”

I spent the next few days thinking about this question. I thought about myself and what makes me happy? Read more…

Food, Farmers, Demons and Monsanto

Demonizing companies and individuals through the use of misleading and false information is never productive. More times than not, fissures are created, within families, communities, states, the country and even the world. It is very acceptable to question actions and results, but let us remember to remain objective in our assessment, research the origins of the information and pass on only that which is true. Passing this type of information along, without doing research on it, is just as irresponsible as passing along an email that says the world will end if you don’t forward to your whole address book.

I have seen a number of people posting on Facebook and Twitter lately, that they have signed one of a couple of petitions currently circulating with a host of claims against Monsanto. Many of these people I consider to be friends and respect. I felt inclined to write this post to provide some additional information in order to clarify several of the accusations that are being claimed. I, for one, as a small farmer and rancher, am very grateful for the work that work that Monsanto and others are doing to help farmers be more efficient and holistic in their management opportunities.

Read more…

2012 Farm Bill: Is It Finally Time?

I have written in other posts on my thoughts regarding the Farm Bill. Once again, we have the opportunity to make changes that could turn a program into a true safety net…meaning it would send producers back up, after falling, not catch them and not let go, or worse yet, promote a state of long-term dependence.

Being from California, I suspect I have a slightly different perspective on the issue of crop insurance. However, I also believe that there are others, particularly in Florida and Michigan, to name a few, who have some similar thoughts. I mention this because of our tremendous diversity in crops grown, many of which do not even qualify for support from the current or past Farm Bills. Read more…

Special Food and Special Hands

I meant to get this post up last week, but, well…..

This year I give thanks for the consumers who purchase what we grow and raise, the farmers and ranchers who provide the bountiful choices we so enjoy and particularly the hands that prepare the food.

In preparing for Thanksgiving this year I was thinking of the wonderful and delicious dishes that I have been so blessed to be able to try over the years. Some of the recipes have been handed down, some are new. Read more…

We’ll Listen and Answer Questions

This fall, the U.S. Farmers &Ranchers Alliance is partnering with Discovery Communications to continue to share its message to create an open dialogue with the American public about how food is grown and raised.

The partnership includes three 60-second vignettes and one longer format vignette (4-7 minutes long) shot documentary style.  The discussions range from conversations about the agricultural community’s commitment to continuous improvement to the role farmers and ranchers play in providing healthy choices for everyone.

The short vignette for the video that I shot with Discovery Channel for USFRA has been released.

 

 

The participating farmers and ranchers included:

Shana Beattie – Livestock and Grain Farmer in Sumner, Nebraska

Jeff Fowle –  Farmer/Rancher in Etna, CA

Ken Oneto – Crop and Produce Farmer in Elk Grove, CA

Dino Giacomazzi – Dairy Farmer  in Hanford, CA

Scott Long – Pork Producer in Manteca, CA

Jill Benson – Egg Producer in San Joaquin Valley, CA

To see the other vignettes, visit the Food Dialogues page.

 

Lego’s and Agriculture? Really?

Star Wars Lego's

My son celebrated his 5th birthday two weekends ago and while there were many new and exciting gifts, the Star Wars Lego’s were one of his favorites.

Now, for those who remember back to their childhood, the Lego’s of today are nothing like we had; talk about special pieces, colors and accessories! Years ago, you had basic colors, basic sizes and they were all rectangles. Today, colors abound, multiple shades exist and the pieces come in arcs, triangles, with hinges, figures and more. Despite the changes, Lego’s have maintained the same design for fastening and those of today continue to work with those of yesteryear.

While I spent several hours with him building and creating, I couldn’t help but think about the association between the transition of Lego’s over past 60+ years and how it relates to agriculture.

Lego’s motto is “Det bedste er ikke for godt,” or   “Only the best is good enough.” Once again, a philosophy shared by those in American agriculture.

Every Lego piece is manufactured with tremendous precision by utilizing computer-aided design (CAD) and 3D modeling. Similarly, crops today are grown with precision, utilizing global positioning satellites (GPS) and 3D soil and hydrology modeling. Certainly, neither Lego, nor agriculture had this technology available 60 years ago, but both recognized the need to improve, become more efficient and be able to continue to offer a safe and high quality product.

Like Lego, agriculture has also changed over the past 60 years, yet remained true to its roots: the importance of family; ensuring the longevity of the soil and enhancing the environment for future generations, while providing safe, wholesome and nutritious food remain as cornerstones.

Lego currently offers more than 30 different themed products, with the ability for all to be used together. Like Lego, the diversity of agriculture provides a plethora of choices that the consumer has never seen before and also has the ability to work together to meet the needs of a growing population.

I wonder what the next step for both Lego and American agriculture is.

Will you ever look at a Lego the same way again?

“And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” Deuteronomy 6:7

DOL (Department Opposed to Labor) Strikes Again

My son helping change water.

I received an email the other day from a friend…an email that at first I thought was a joke, a spoof, one of those emails that once you read part way down says something to the effect of “Gotcha! Things aren’t really as bad they seem.”

I read through the synopsis…waiting to come to the “Gotcha” part…it wasn’t there…this was a legitimate proposal by the Department of Labor.

I was dumfounded at first…then a state of disbelief…followed by a wave of legitimate anger.

How could anyone seriously propose these new regulations for agricultural employment of children?

What is even worse, is that it will negatively impact and make illegal, many of the routine activities considered by the department to be “work” that occur on a daily basis on all farms and ranches. Read more…

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