This post is one I have been rolling around in my head for weeks. It is important for me to write it, and do a good job, because it is the main reason I decided to get involved as an advocate for agriculture and start my own blog. It is a post that talks about the issue of COMMUNICATION. This is a weighty subject and I think I might have to do a follow up in the future because I have already edited about 5 times for length!
Our population has been growing at an increasing rate every year. Years ago those employed in agriculture and the agriculture industry (think; farmers, scientists, companies like Monsanto, Syngenta, Bayer, John Deere, Case IH, etc.) saw what was coming and where agriculture needed to be to meet the needs of a growing global populace. They put their heads down and worked feverishly at improving the system. Together they have done a great job; “A Canadian farmer could only feed 10 people a century ago, but can now feed over 120 today. Farming productivity has jumped by 300 per cent since the 1950s – and at the same time, we’re using fewer resources, less land and newer, better technologies to produce more food.” http://www.farmfoodcare.org/news/2-farm-food-care/37-dirt-on-farming
What we have all failed miserably at is communicating to the rest of the world what we are doing and why. In a world where every generation is becoming further and further removed from the farm life, we mistakenly assumed people would understand why these things had to be done, and that changes were being made in a safe and sustainable way.
A world in 1950 where around 2 billion people woke up every morning was vastly different from today where the population is over 7 billion, and 2050 when the population is expected to hit 9.5 billion (requiring an increase in global food production of around 70%) source: UN, Dept. of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2013). World Population Prospects: The 2012 Revision.
About 21,000 people die every day from starvation or hunger related causes, without the agricultural advances of the last 50 to 60 years that number would be a lot larger. I have been told, more than once, that agriculture needs to go back to the way it was 50 years ago. This is clearly a mindset that comes from not understanding our global situation.