Farmers need to do a better job at connecting with the public when talking about the benefits that biotechnology brings to producers, consumers and the environment, said Joanna Lidback, a dairy farmer from northeast Vermont, today. Lidback, who also keeps a blog documenting her family’s life on the farm (farmlifelove.com), testified during a hearing of the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture.
“I believe that biotechnology plays a major role in our collective ability to not only feed a growing global population but also to make individual improvements on our own farms, be it 45 cows or 4500; a row crop operation or an apple orchard; a multiple-generation farm or a beginning farmer,” she said. “The science shows that GMOs are safe and bring tremendous benefits, but we in agriculture have failed to communicate this effectively with the public.”
Lidback testified on behalf of Agri-Mark, a dairy cooperative with more than 1,200 members in New England and New York, and the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives, a national association representing America’s farmer cooperatives. Agri-Mark is a member of both the National Milk Producers Federation and NCFC.Lidback also highlighted the impact that being forced to use non-GMO feed would have on the 45 cow dairy farm that she operates with her husband.