With all the media coverage surrounding food today, it’s not uncommon to come across someone who has a question about the food they eat or prepare for their families. Every day there seems to be another study published saying you should eat more of this or cut that out altogether.
Today’s consumers seem to be caught in the middle of an endless tug-of-war match between groups trying to tell them what they should or shouldn’t eat. This grudge match has ebbed and flowed over recent years, sparking countless fad diets and a general distrust in today’s food system.
This distrust has been fueled by the fact that today, the average consumer is 3-4 generations removed from the farm. When talking with consumers, two general sentiments seem to continually rise to the surface – they are afraid they are making the wrong food choices for themselves or their families, and they are guilty about the items they put on the table.
The knowledge gap between consumers and their food has only been widened by the fact that, as the discussion about food continues, one group’s voice has been largely lost in the mix–the farmers and ranchers who grow and raise your food. Greg Greving, a corn and soybean farmer from Chapman, Nebraska sees the value in helping consumers learn more about where their food comes from. “I wish that everyone who had questions or concerns about their food would take the time to visit a farm to see the passion farmers have for their work,” he said. “We are committed to raising a safe food supply. We want you to feel confident about the food you are purchasing, knowing it was raised with care using the best knowledge at hand, and that we feed the same food to our families every day.”
Greving said his work on the farm has been very rewarding. “Farming is a rewarding career for so many reasons, but one thing I enjoy in particular is the fact that I get to go out every spring and create life. We value the opportunity we are given to experience this lifecycle each year. I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of it 41 times, and I’m proud that I get to share it with my two boys, who are the fourth generation in our family to farm. My boys and I are grateful and proud of the fact that we get to play a role in putting food on families’ tables, and we hope to pass that on to my two grandsons.”
All the attention being paid to food is a good thing. Farmers want consumers to learn more and be comfortable with the decisions they are making. So, the next time you have a question about your food, ask a farmer. They’ll have a story to tell. And the dirt on their hands to prove it.