Don’t point fingers on farming
Re: “What is your food eating? Industrial farms are polluting water, livestock, say Thomas Locke and Shana Gallagher,” Wednesday Viewpoints.
As a farmer in North Texas, I was deeply offended by this column. I, for one, do know where that feed comes from, because some of it is from my very own farm. Together with my brother, nephew and grandson, I grow thousands of bushels of grain which are fed to livestock each year.
My operation looks a lot like most of my neighbors’, and in fact, like most farms across the U.S., where 97 percent of farms are family-owned.
Locke and Gallagher seem to think that only farmers who market their product directly to consumers have the right to use the word sustainable, but I disagree. My family and I produce a higher-quality product with fewer resources than we did 10 years ago. In my book, that is the definition of sustainable. We also work to maintain healthy soils, control erosion and minimize other environmental impacts. Modern agriculture is not leading us back to the Dust Bowl days — it is actively preventing it by each farmer’s stewardship of the natural resources that we rely on.
I think there is room in agriculture for all producers, so let’s stop pointing fingers and get back to feeding people.
Jack Norman, Howe