I am writing in response to an ongoing debate in the state of Missouri. As a beef producer myself, I feel that it is imperative we, as an agricultural community, address the issue. In Missouri currently, there is a proposed constitutional amendment to ensure the right to utilize modern practices.
Our industry is coming under ever-increasing scrutiny. Though some have worked to get out and spread the news of our industry, many of us have continued on about our daily lives, willing to talk, but not wanting to be in the spotlight.
Should we continue down this path, we will inevitably wind up far enough down the road that there is no return to having any say in what we do. Potentially, we could end up being at the mercy of others. In some senses, we are at the mercy of society, but we have freedoms yet too.
The aim of this constitutional amendment in Missouri is to ensure that we, as an agricultural community, are protected. This, however, will not be the end all, be all protection of agriculture. There will be continually more scrutiny.
When facing this, we must remember to be their friend and show them why we do what we do, acknowledge their concerns, and work to find middle ground. The more we engage them, the more we will educate them, rather than the other way around.
I challenge all of us involved in agriculture to utilize our resources to the best that we can so we can work better ourselves.