Move Away from Modern Production Methods Could Have Global Impact

The criticism of modern U.S. agricultural practices and the ideas of moving toward organic and local methods could have a global impact. That's the message of Robert Paarlberg - who will speak at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln later this month as part of a lecture series that has also covered modern livestock handling practices, the nation's role in global food production and the need for more interest in agricultural research and development. Paarlberg will present the need for agricultural advocates to defend modern agricultural practices and discuss how changing American agriculture to fit consumer demands for organic, local and slow food will be felt around the world. He says some people have concluded that our dominant food and farming systems are unhealthy, unsafe, environmentally unsustainable and socially unjust. He says they want to return to smaller scale farming systems that integrate crop and livestock production, they want local foods and they want organic food. According to Paarlberg - many developing countries are following organic and local practices - resulting in low productivity. He says many of the poorest countries in Africa and Asia will be more hesitant to adopt modern practices if they aren't supported by U.S. consumers. Paarlberg's lecture will be available online shortly after his February 27th presentation. Previous lectures are already available at heuermannlectures dot unl dot edu (

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