Farm Progress

Could California's attack on agriculture be fatal blow?

October 3, 2016

2 Min Read
<p>USDA photo.&nbsp;</p>

We’ve heard how California’s Mediterranean Climate coupled with its rich soils is a perfect mix for producing hundreds of crops for human and animal consumption. We know too that other areas in the state that aren’t fit for producing crops do well to raise livestock.

The honest question then becomes: where else in the United States can this be replicated?

That’s not a sarcastic, rhetorical question – it’s an honest one because if another place exists and the people who run that area aren’t overtly anti-agriculture like California is, then brace yourselves for a mass migration of farmers to your region.

The next California exodus could be almost biblical in proportion given that every one of those leaving will have effectively one thing in common: they once profitably produced food and fiber.

I recently spoke on the phone with an ag industry leader who suggested he’s looking for another state that grows tree nuts. The implication is maybe that state will be friendlier to agriculture than California is.

For the stories that eloquently spell out why large-scale, commercial farming is better on the environment and the anecdotal reports of just how much those involved in agriculture give back in terms of time and capital to their local communities, there are others like this that suggest America doesn’t want farmers doing what they do anymore – at least not on this continent.

That’s certainly the case in California, where legislators and regulators regularly accept invitations from farm groups to tour commercial agriculture operations one week, then the next are back in their business suits inventing more ways to make it impossible for those same farmers to produce food and fiber.

 It’s difficult to be optimistic when things like this happen.

This should frighten consumers who, if they’d actually think this out, would see the dangers of ceding food production to foreign markets, where in some cases, chemical pesticides that are not even allowed in the United States, are used on produce before it is shipped to the U.S.

But that apparently does not matter as I just read consumers are more concerns with “shared values” than facts. Good luck finding those between the hard-working farmer and urban do-gooders who elect politicians to legislate their morality on the rest of us.


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