It’s USFRA’s belief that farmers and ranchers must not only learn and incorporate new practices and technologies to keep up with a growing population, but also do it with conservation and environmental stewardship in mind.
Farmers and ranchers, like most working professionals today, are always incorporating new technologies and practices that not only benefit their economic bottom line, but also contribute to the health of the planet. From job security to a way of life, farmers and ranchers are committed to taking care of their land and animals.
A constant theme throughout the article was how farmers and ranchers can and are doing more with less – a vital part of modern agriculture. Here are just a few examples of this type of commitment to environmental stewardship:
- GPS technologies that provide variable rates for fertilizer applications
- Biotechnology and breeding advancements – insect resistance allows farmers to reduce pesticide applications; breeding crops to perform better in reduced water environments and yield consistently in drought conditions; new technologies are becoming more available to fight disease
- Nutrition advancements and ration research for livestock not only help ranchers provide their animals the best diet possible, they also provide the animal with all the essential nutrients so they can do more with less
Another good example is “terraculture”, a term addressed in the article:
“…‘terraculture’ — essentially farming done with the planet in mind. That means taking the best of both conventional and organic agriculture, using water far more efficiently for irrigation than we do now and even altering our diets.”
Farmers and ranchers like you can use this story as an opportunity to showcase environmental stewardship efforts and examples of continuous improvements made on your farm or ranch. This story brings a balanced voice to the forefront, noting that extremes are never the best answer. Rather, it’s allowing readers to see that there’s a real opportunity available to farmers and ranchers and even consumers on reducing the environmental impact by committing to continuous improvement. As the article says, different types of farmers and ranchers should come together to solve the problems facing our planet, rather than focusing on what is right or wrong. Raise your voice and share your stories. If you’re active in social media – write a blog post and share it with us on our Facebook page. Tell us about the improvements you’ve incorporated that better the environment. We want to hear your stories and our followers are excited to learn from you.
TIME Magazine recently ran an article on how to feed a growing population without destroying the planet. Too often we see articles that point the finger at farmers and ranchers and their management practices as the reasoning behind the end of the planet as we know it. This article, however, provides a balanced overview of various approaches to ensuring that we not only feed the population but do it with the planet in mind. And at the end of the day, it will take different types of farming, both organic and conventional, coming together to solve these problems and continue moving forward. As the article says, "there is no silver bullet solution. But there is silver buckshot."