These numbers have been drilled into my head. They’ve been mentioned at every agriculture conference I have attended for the past few years. If you work in the ag industry you’ll probably know what I’m referring to when I say these numbers. If not, I’ll fill you in. The global population is expected to reach nine billion people by the year 2050. And the big ag question is: how do we feed nine billion people? We in the agriculture industry continue to spend a lot of time talking about the need to feed a growing world population. But are people hearing what we’re saying?
Unfortunately, when we as an ag industry say that we need to feed the growing global population, the rest of the world hears something different.
We say: We need to feed the world.
They hear: You want to produce more to sell to the world.
Most people think farmers just want to produce more so they can sell more and make more money. Is this true? Yes AND No. Today’s farmers are running sophisticated businesses and just like any other business, they have to be profitable. Of course farmers want to make money. Why shouldn’t they? Other people want to make money in their work. But I believe that most farmers also recognize the unique position that they’re in. They play a crucial role in feeding the world. What a huge responsibility. After all, no farmers, no food. So yes, our farmers want to produce more so they can sell more BUT they also want to help feed the growing global population.
So this leads me to the important lesson I learned at a recent ag conference I attended:
It’s not what you say, it’s what they hear.
What do you think? Please comment below.