Posted on February 18, 2014 at 3:20 PM by Iowa Corn
As a woman who grew up on a crop and hog farm, and as a woman who will be joining another crop and hog farm I consider myself to be a pretty lucky girl. I consider myself lucky because I know the truths about today’s farmers and the awesome job they are doing to provide quality products for our stomachs. When my crops and hogs get attacked, it gets personal. It get personal because I know what’s really going on because I’ve lived it for 20 years. It gets personal because it’s attacking my families’ way of life.
The Chipotle series called Farmed and Dangerous is using humor, and scary marketing ploys to scare consumers into buying organic and antibiotic free food. They are creating fear in food, not farmers. My family has been treating their hogs with antibiotics for years, and none of us has ever gotten sick from consuming our products. We consume the pork we grow, so it’s in our best interest to use the best practices in our operation to get the best products on the market possible.
1. 96% of farms are family farms. Look at these awesome farm families that are working hard to put that food on your plate today! farmersfeedus.org
2. Antibiotics that are used in livestock production are out of the animals system before entering the market. Farmers have to follow strict regulations of withdrawal periods before sending their livestock to market. (Meaning, the antibiotics must have completely left the animals system) Click here for more information.
3. Organic producers still use certified chemicals on their crops, they are just derived from a natural source rather than a synthetic source. Don’t believe this? Check it out from the EPA here. e
4. Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) go through several tests and approximately 13 years of approvals before entering the market. The government also regulates this. Want to know more about GMOs? Check out this great source.
5. GMOs allow farmers to use less chemicals on their land, not more. (Ask a farmer, he/she’ll tell you!) Here’s another great source for your GMO questions.
6. Pork and poultry are not treated with hormones, because it’s been tested to see there is no added benefit. Look at this great site to explain more on hormone use!
We as farmers have nothing to hide. We don’t have any secret laboratories or facilities where we are concocting a new way to make money. In fact, I bet most farmers would be glad to have you out to their farm to talk about how they are growing the corn that is going into your corn flakes, or the beef that makes your juicy hamburgers, or how about the soybeans that are put into your Hershey’s chocolate? (Soy lecithin, an oil coming from soybeans to make your chocolate creamy and smooth)
Our farms are not top secret or restricted. We’re not hiding anything behind our barn doors. Come take a peek as to what’s really going on, and I promise it isn’t anything close to what Chipotle is insinuating.
Chipotle, I’m disappointed that you had to go so low as to put down a farmers way of life and use scare tactics in order for you to make more money. Is it getting too expensive for you to provide only organic, hormone and antibiotic free products for your customers that you’re begging for more business in the wrong way?
My name is Nicole Patterson and I am currently a student at Iowa State University pursuing a degree in Agricultural Education with a communications option. I am also a CommonGround volunteer. I grew up on a family farm in northern Iowa where we raised mostly all corn, some soybeans and had two hog production facilities. Over the years, I have found a passion and love for agriculture and have a strong desire to help farmers tell their stories of everyday farm life and the good things they are doing in agriculture today.