USFR Customer Support
See the latest reader comments and hear John explain some of agriculture’s complex topics.
Viewers Speak on Cheap Food, Subsidies and Transportation Woes
Oct 17, 2011
These viewer comments were received following the Oct. 15-16, 2011, edition of "U.S. Farm Report"
#1: John - you recently disputed the claim that the USA had the cheapest food in the world. You objected to the yardstick of percent of income needed to feed a family, to determine cost of food. What unit of measure would you prefer? Also, could you enlighten us as to where in the world people feed themselves for less? And by what measure? When such a claim is made, I feel It's only reasonable to ask for specifics. Could you back up your statement?
#2: Are the prices the government pays prevented planting, disaster payments and federal crop insurance set in October? If this is the case, a drop in prices by false reports saves the government possibly billions of dollars depending on drop in prices.
#3: I'm baffled by the fact that the world spends millions on researching and developing smartphones, one model right after the other, yet we haven't figured out logistic transportation of goods and produce. I suggest blatant illegalization of unnecessary transportation. Period. It's not really about the carbon footprint or the cost of fuel, I'm just one of those people who choose to shop local, because it makes sense. And I believe that if everyone believed as I do, it would eventually become more economical and less polluting to puchase local goods. These are my thoughts. And I have a question. I live in east central Ohio and am researching building a greenhouse. My intention is to grow semi organic vegatables year-round to sell to local businesses. I need information on what it takes to grow in my climate year-round. Can you steer me to good advice?
Hope that my opinion was appreciated.
#4: Hello John - It was nice to hear you state your opposition to farm subsidies. It would be a whole lot nicer to see you take a visible role in opposing federal crop insurance. After all, this is the big kahuna in farm subsidies and is capitalized into land values, has played a major role in the destruction of rural communities, and among the most egregious acts of Congress by granting massive income guarantees and subsidies to the largest farmers. But I guess you are
really not that much of a conservative.
JOHN'S REPLY: Lowell - you are right. I'm not much of a conservative by today's definition anyway. I have never used or supported crop insurance subsidies and stated that by saying it should be funded by "farmer premiums." Perhaps you missed that. Thanks for writing and watching.