Food Education is Important to Agriculture's Future

Food education is something that is very lacking in today’s’ society. Sorting out the definitions of organic, natural, transgenic, or biotech can be a bit hefty for those of us in the industry…never mind the consumer. Much of what we see at the grocery store today is more about marketing than anything to do with food. In my mind this is more caused by the consumer than the food companies. Food, like many other products is marketed to consumers because that is what they respond to.

The International Food Information Council (IFIC) funded this video series which was entitled “Whats For Lunch?” It pokes fun at the misconception of the consumer about food.

Whether it is organics or biotech, the consumer is really not informed. As the video shows this has never been more evident. The battle over organics and biotech ingredients will never cease because it is about marketing and grabbing market share. In my opinion organics and natural is just as much about marketing as the large food companies with processed foods. Just like organic extremists encourage you to eat food only within 100 miles others say biotech is the only answer to feed the world. As most of you know I am pro-biotech but I am also fully aware that there is a place for organics and biotech in the marketplace. You are going to here lots of hype very shortly from the media about the new movie “Food Inc” (I will have more about this movie in the future). From the previews I have seen it is quite misleading and is doing nothing to really educate the consumer. The industry needs to be better at having discussions with the consumer but as well the consumer has to be willing to engage in the discussion. Saying organics is for pot smokers, biotech is bad and the world is coming to an end if you eat either is ridiculous and getting us no where.

I think videos like the one above at least start the discussion.

 

Shaun Haney

Shaun grew up on a family seed farm in Southern Alberta. Haney Farms produces, conditions and retails wheat, barley, canola and corn seed. Shaun Haney is the founder of RealAgriculture.com. @shaunhaney

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2 Comments

Shaun Haney

In reference to the above comment…yes it is true that IFIC is funded to some extent by big ag but the video still does capture the essence of of the misconception of food education. It is no more misleading than Food Inc. People watch Food Inc and think it is the truth without bias but the IFIC videos are laced with misconceptions. This is just not the case.

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