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Beware of dire predictions

Beware of dire predictions

By Stewart Truelsen

Here is a prediction: American farmers and ranchers will be able to feed this nation well into the future if given access to land, water, capital and scientific advances. If you’d like the prediction to be more specific, let’s say the nation’s food supply will be secure until at least the year 2061. 

There’s an excellent chance this prediction will be true, but it’s hardly the stuff books are written about. A prediction like this would only bring a yawn, and the reader would go back to worrying about dire predictions of economic collapse or the 2012 apocalypse. 

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Chipotle Grill’s irresponsible marketing needs to get real

Chipotle Grill’s irresponsible marketing needs to get real

By Si Cook

I read an article last week about how Chipotle Grill is promoting the natural, organic ingredients that they use to make the majority of their menu items. “That’s nice,” I thought—until I learned the rest of the story about their marketing tactics.

It seems Chipotle has developed and launched a marketing campaign designed to drive customers to their restaurants through fear and mistrust of modern agriculture practices. They developed a folksy, animated video featuring a song by Coldplay and performed by Willie Nelson.

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Three challenges in the debate over sustainable agriculture

By Mike Barnett

Texas Farm Bureau: Three challenges in the debate over sustainable agriculture

The rising cost of survival is something society needs to think about as the phrase sustainable agriculture is bandied about in an increasingly bitter debate. There are many challenges as the world ponders its food future. Here’s three:

• Farming is a business.

Recent Farmer’s Share data released by the National Farmers Union shows the agriculture producer’s piece of each dollar the consumer spends on food is 19 cents. The other 81 cents goes to processing, packaging and transportation costs.

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4-H kids get it – Some environmental activists are full of compost!

By Gene HallSustainable agriculture, 4-H

I heard recently from one of those adult 4-H leaders who make this program so great for Texas kids, rural and urban alike. I’m not going to reveal any names or locations because animal rights and environmental extremists can get a little testy when their sacred cows get gored by folks like me, who are agnostics with regard to their green religion.

My friend took a group of kids to one of those places where you learn how to help underdeveloped countries establish subsistence farming. There is good work being done there and in other places like them. If only they could turn off the propaganda machine when they make their presentations to impressionable kids!

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In praise of organic farming

Texas Farm Bureau: Organic gardeningBy Gene Hall

I am a fan of the way we grow food in America—every way—every technique. In this blogspace I am sometimes forced to defend that. It’s my job and my passion. In my enthusiasm for defending what some call “conventional agriculture,” I don’t want to leave the impression that either Mike or I don’t appreciate organic farming. In fact, I have deep respect for those that labor to raise food and fiber for that market.

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