One. These statistics show the dynamic and incredible change taking in place in agriculture during that time period. The adoption of better production methods allows us to grow more food more efficiently for more people. We’ve gotten so much better at producing food that fewer and fewer people have to work in the fields. From tractors to genetics and mechanization, we’ve seen an incredible transformation of what it looks like to be a “farmer.” We now have more food security than ever before.
Two. The statistics also show the staggering reality that fewer and fewer Americans work as farmers, live on the farm, and connect with agriculture. That isn’t completely a bad thing! Our society and culture has grown in so many amazing ways because people have the ability and freedom to focus on pursuits outside of growing food to survive. The technology we’ve advanced in other sectors has benefited farming, too. But we need to be aware that not everyone understands the finer details of our production methods. It doesn’t make them bad people, it just means we need to be more willing to engage in conversations and discussions about what we do on the farm and why.
I love the technology advancements and our abilities to produce higher yields with less acreage. I don’t love the disconnect between American eaters and American farmers. It proves challenging.