“Together we’re growing more from less for generations to come”,
“Efficiently protect the environment and in same time make your farm more profitable”,
“We work on increasing world’s major crops by 20% by 2020, without using more land, water or inputs”,
“The more people that get involved, the better we can feed a fast-growing population”
The above slogans are copy-pasted from a marketing campaign of one of world’s largest crop chemical producers. Sounds like a good cause, right? Well, lets review the Facts together! This is a blog for wildlife, but we need to look at issues impacting wildlife in context, to better understand!
Firstly, we need to understand a bit the economics that is driving today’s society, I try to do this in simplified language. This is a free market system (with some arguments over protectionism applied by certain countries to protect their national interests), meaning market players (Businesses) competing for same consumers (you)! Business decisions, simply put, are driven by profit (Revenues from Sales towards consumers minus costs to produce the service/product)! You, the consumer, don’t get tricked, the Big Businesses (Corporations) are not charities, fighting for better world (as it may sound in above slogans), they are profit driven organizations, owned by shareholders, these are normally investors (people or other organizations e.g. investment funds, pension funds, etc) purchasing shares and building a stock portfolio which are supposed to maximize their profits at shortest term possible!
Secondly, we need to understand another stakeholder in today society, the government! They are the ones managing public money with scope of assuring welfare of its citizens , but lately being ever more influenced by the more and more powerful shadow sovereigns, the Corporations! Unfortunately governments, in context of capitalism and free market, use mainly one standard measure, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), to asses wealth of a nation, but which has nothing to do with welfare/happiness/health of citizens! As per the GDP formula, the bigger the consumption of households, the higher the GDP! What is missing however in GDP formula is the real cost for destroying the nature, for polluting the rivers, burn the forests and exterminate all the other species!
And so, governments and corporations seem to going along just fine in their financial objectives and ignorance towards environment and ecologically sustainable practices!
When it comes to agricultural sector, this is also run today mostly by big private Corporations! I recommend reading below 3 books, to leverage from extensive research in the field and observations of the respectable authors!
First book, DEAD ZONE, explain how industrialized agriculture today is surely and rapidly destroying bio-diversity and ecosystems the humanity is relaying upon! Around the world, through mono-cultures (either soya crops in Brazil, or palm oil in Indonesia, or corn plantations in United States) destroying wildlife natural habitats to make space for plantations, or its fertilizers and pesticides to boost productivity which are entering soil, rivers and oceans and create so called Dead zones by killing earth warms or plankton so useful in a healthy ecosystem, or over-fishing practices even with purpose of feeding salmon farms in case of smaller fishes captured, the planet resources and wildlife are being destroyed at an outstanding and unsustainable speed, under slogans of feeding the world, where in fact author calculates we could feed more than 2 planets with what we produce today, if we could only change today practices, by replacing industrialized farms of animals fed on crops which have a 3% yield of converting the crop in beef protein, and instead letting them graze naturally, and by removing all chemicals and rely instead or organic produces to feed directly people, without the need to remove wildlife in the process!
More arguments are provided in second book, Project Animal Farm, which is a MUST READ for consumers all over the world, to understand the misery in which industrialized farm animals are raised, how more loosely regulated “free range farms” are cheating consumer under slogans like “We work with Mother Nature, not against her”, and to convince you even more to turn to organic, strictly regulated, food products!
And because it is always safer to grow your own food, and you can do that in a wildlife friendly manner if you have your own garden, I recommend a third book Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardener, whose practices should become your own, if you believe in a sustainable natural ecosystem is the way forward, where people will be more happy!
To conclude with, today industrialized agriculture is inefficient and dangerous, while there are sustainable alternatives to this! As consumers, if we want to preserve bio-diversity and protect this planet for our future generations, stay informed, read labels of the products you buy, act responsibly! Buy organic, don’t consume more than you need, don’t waste, favor organic products and those companies certified for producing responsibly, recycle as much as possible and more! We have no excuse for not doing so!