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Rethink agriculture

March 22, 2014
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IBJ Letters To The Editor

I appreciate the recognition that there are alternatives to industrialized agriculture [March 17 editorial], but I encourage IBJ not to fall into the trap of “feeding the world.”

What we call conventional agriculture here in the United States is not the way to feed the world, anyway. Productivity gains from genetically modified organisms have plateaued and now it’s just a treading water exercise trying to keep up with nature, as IBJ correctly pointed out.

The U.S. is unique in that when Europeans moved, they found either empty land or displaced the existing population. As farms grew over the past 60 or so years we were able to move the displaced farmers into factories, etc.

Obviously, this isn’t a viable alternative anymore anywhere in the world.

China plans to relocate millions of people to cities over the next several years and increase the average farm size to three acres, up from 1.5 acres.

So the answer to “feeding the world” actually has to focus on significantly smaller farms rather than ever-larger industrial farming.

Chris Baggott,

farmer and CEO, Tyner Pond Farm, Greenfield
 

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now

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