Dear John, um I Mean Cargill,

I’ve never written a “Dear John” letter before. Never needed to. Until now. To you.

I’m leaving.

You cheated on me.

I’ve found someone better.

I doubt this letter will cause any tears but I do hope it pricks your conscious.

For several years, we’ve purchased feed from your company. I must say the people we have dealt with have been superb. Great and knowledgeable.

Your product has fed many of our cows successfully.

While I could complain of high prices I imagine you’re comparable.

So, why am I leaving?

Many farmers had a working relationship with you. We grow for you, we buy from you and support each other. Until this past spring, you turned your back on us and joined an organization that is not farmer friendly. An anti-GMO organization that I will not give space to in this letter.

I totally understand that you need to accommodate all types of customers. You had a non-GMO process in place that seemed to be doing the job just fine.

Then, you messed up.

I agree with Julie Gunlock in her commentary – The Unholy Alliance Between Big Biz and Big Alarmism when she wrote: Cargill, one of America's biggest food and agriculture companies, recently announced its partnership with the _________, an organization focused on misinforming consumers about GMO safety, and, as the organization's name implies, ridding the American marketplace of GMOs.

First, there are many who have confirmed that GMOs are safe for humans and animals. Such as the National Academy of Sciences, American Medical Association, World Health Organization and many more.

There are groups of people who want you to believe GMOs are unsafe. Why? Business reasons. And a whole lot of band wagon jumpers – “Wow, did you hear GMOs will make you grow an extra leg? –We better jump on the anti-GMO band wagon then.”

The loudest voice is heard and right now the false, fake, fear promoting voice is prospering at our expense.

Do you think it’s a coincidence that on the board of this anti-GMO organization are people connected to Organic, Natural and Environmentalist businesses and groups?

Hmmmmm . . . if there are more and more people who are afraid of the safe GMO foods then there will be more to purchase their “super safe” food products. Funny how that works.

But, I digress – you know all of that. I added that in hopes everyone who reads this will hear the truth.

So, back to you Cargill.

“Helping farmers prosper” is part of founder’s W.W.Cargill’s vision statement. Somehow siding with fear propagating, false teaching businesses that encourage consumers to purchase a selected type of food doesn’t line up with helping farmers prosper.

As I said before, the loudest voice is heard. This anti-GMO organization is a huge voice – like a Goliath.

Farmers need a David to go against Goliath.

You could have been our David. You could have brought truth to the marketplace for consumers.

Now the Goliath has more strength to frighten others to pick the more expensive, yet no difference in food value, item.

So, having written all of that, I’m choosing to hire a David as our feed company. We chose Farmer’s Co-op Elevator Co. in Hudsonville, over you and your weak backbone to stand up for farmers.

My hope is that enough farmers look for a David and we join forces to shine a light on the truth in agriculture.

So, this is farewell and good-bye. I’d wish you luck and success but then that would be a lie. I wish you would stand up straight and partner with those of us who are growing safe, affordable food for our families and the world.

Sadly, Sincerely,

 

Help, My Cow Needs Glucose

Did you know a cow can suffer from low blood sugar?

I never thought about it but was sort of surprised when a couple of ours were being treated.

I asked our amazing herdsman how and why.

If a cow has an injured foot, mastitis, pneumonia or any other ailment that would slow her down and prevent her from eating – that would be a good set up for low blood sugar. If she isn’t eating enough of a proper diet it could cause low blood sugar.

In a herd of 700 how do you find these cows? Well, our cows are all monitored when they come in the parlor and their milk output drastically dropped so the computer sorted them out. When that happened they were brought into the hospital pen area to examine and determine why.

The cows that have low sugar are wobbly, ears down and not looking good.

The urine was tested to determine the diagnosis.

We administered an IV of glucose and drenched them with sugar water. The sugar water is slowly absorbed to help wake up the liver – “say there liver get with it!”

They were treated for two days and were fine – these were considered as clinical low blood sugar.

There is such a thing as chronic - where cows don’t respond to the treatment because their brain just can’t communicate with the liver and get things back in sync. When the liver shuts down, the cow is done.

 

 

Domino's Pizza - Farmer's "David" in a Goliath World

Domino’s Pizza – a favorite that is even more favorite!

Finally, finally a food related business stepped up and stood beside farmers!

There is so much false, fear laden voices and outright lies about farming practices. And those voices have been the loudest with the biggest punch – but without any truth.

As a farmer, it gets harder and harder to do the good job we can do through technology and advances in our practices when ignorance shuts us down. Repeatedly companies are caving to the voices of unreason.

In fact, our feed company Cargill is one of the latest. I guess I should say our future, former feed company as we are in the process of pulling $300,000.00 + account from them. My Dear John, er I mean Dear Cargill blog will be soon coming.

Culver’s is another company that stands proudly with farmers but today, let’s concentrate on Dominos.

I had a conversation with our feed guy and told him the false, fake organizations that continue to lie and push their agenda around is like a Goliath. A giant to be slain. And, our farm is like a David trying to slay the giant. We are small and our account will do little to the company’s bottom line, but I want to be a David and fight and win the unexpected.

So, Dominos – thanks for being our David!

Thanks for acknowledging that farmers know how to farm better than activists. Farmers are giving their lives for their profession. Long hours, stressed relationships, exhaustion and joy – even in it all, yes joy is all part of the profession of farming.

Find a Domino’s. Order pizza. Lots and lots!

http://brownfieldagnews.com/news/dominos-stands-ground-animal-rights-extremists/

Who Will Stand with Farmers?

So, another company has caved to the Non-GMO hysteria. A large feed company that we happen to purchase product from has partnered with the Non-GMO Project. Disappointing for us farmers to say the least.

There is a candy company that won’t use GMO sugar beets any longer.

A milk company contemplating using milk from cows fed only non-GMO feed.

Why?

Because the squeaky wheel has stomped their foot, thrown a temper tantrum and companies are giving in instead of standing their ground on scientific information. I guess it is easier to give in and more profitable for them.

Us farmers? Not so much.

I won’t take the time to educate about GMOs. There’s plenty of great information out there that too many people are overlooking.

Here are three sites that explain it better than I could.

https://ag.purdue.edu/GMOs/pages/scienceofgmos.aspx#.WNU5rW_yupo

https://www.geneticliteracyproject.org/2017/02/14/without-glyphosate-farming-look-like/

http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2016/05/17/gmos-safe-academies-of-science-report-genetically-modified-food/84458872/

The reason for my blog is to ask – How and when will companies stand up, speak up, hold up and support agriculture that chooses to use modern, safe technology?

Many, me included have sung the song, “We need to share our story, let our voices be heard, tell the truth. We are our best advertisement.” And I still agree with that.

But –

It’s time for those who are supposed to be working with us farmers to stand with us. Defend us – speak the truth about GMOs and not submit to the pressures of specialty groups, so called food experts and the hysteria that follows them.

If this nonsense of surrendering to ignorance and fear keeps up, we are quickly heading in the direction of unaffordable food. Right now we have the most affordable and safe food source around.

So what do you say – Seed companies, Feed companies, Co-ops, Mills, Processors, Producers, Implement Dealers – any and all companies that are part of the agriculture world.

Can and will we farmers hear your voices with us?

For the general public reading this – please take the time to read the links about the GMOs. Having your voices added to ours will make a more powerful chorus to be sung.