AmericanFarm.com

Too many wrongs make a write (Editorial)


(May 13, 2014) Letters, we get letters. Oh, do we get letters.
Most of them come to us via e-mail, and for the most part, they are news releases.
We must be on a list somewhere that says if it has to do with food or farming, send it to American Farm Publications, Inc.
It is not unusual to receive between 50 and 75 of these “letters” in a 24-hour period.
Grab a week’s vacation away from the office and an inbox can accumulate as many as 400 unread messages of one sort or another. Most are news releases and we open, and at least scan through them.
This one caught our attention:
It was an advance notice of a forum to be held at the University of Minnesota summoned by something called the Center for Science and Democracy and the Union of Concerned Scientists. (You remember them: The number of “scientists” among them has been disputed in the past.)
The forum would explore, the news release said, how the food industry, ignores science, but dictates food policy.
The first two paragraphs of the e-mail sounded the alert, so to speak.
We did not use the release — Minnesota is a long way off — but we wanted you to see the opening graphs. Consumers need to be informed about what is going on out there in the fear of food culture which the millennial Generation Y has spawned in our culture.
The then-coming forum — it was held on May 5-6 — was unveiled in this fashion:
“Science indicates that the unprecedented increase in diet-related diseases is directly related to current food policies, which too often place corporate and political interests above human health.
“The dominance of corporate interests in the food system leaves little opportunity for scientific evidence to inform policies.
“For example, farm policies offer few incentives for growing fruits and vegetables — effectively discouraging production of and affordable access to the very foods that keep us healthiest and can reduce the incidence of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes, among the costliest and deadliest diseases afflicting Americans today.
“Better use of science can undo the damage these unbalanced policies are having on the nation’s healthcare system, economy and security. But what would such an alternative food environment—one that prioritizes public interests over corporate and political gains — look like?”

It was also announced the Union of Concerned Scientists is partnering with the Minneapolis/Saint Paul Film Society to host a free sneak-preview of the upcoming documentary “Fed Up,” and that The Center for Science and Democracy would release a report documenting how the food industry misleads consumers about the amount of added sugar in its products.
As usual these days, it’s “Big Ag” attempting to kill us all.
The assumption is, of course, U.S. farmers and the industry which has evolved to support them can feed us and the world from backyard gardens.
You know, an apple a day ...