WHO IS DENNIS AVERY? ANY HISTORY?
WHAT IS THE HUDSON INSTITUTE?
WHAT IS THE CENTER FOR GLOBAL FOOD ISSUES?
WHAT GROUPS FUND THESE DISTINGUISHED ORGANIZATIONS?
ARE THERE STUDIES WHICH SUPPORT OR REFUTE MR. AVERY?
IS HIS YIELD INFO BASED ON DISCONTINUING CHEMICAL USE IN
AGRICULTURE BUT NOT REPLACING IT WITH ANY PRACTICE OF
ASIDE FROM THE NEW ZEALAND/ WASHINGTON STATE STUDY ON
COMPARATIVE FARM PROFITABILITY BETWEEN ORGANIC AND
CONVENTIONAL FARMS, IS THERE ANY YIELD INFO ON WHICH TO BASE
HOW MUCH OF "HIGH-YIELD FARMING" IS BASED ON NONRENEWABLE ENERGY
(PETROLEUM)? WHEN WILL THOSE RESERVES RUN OUT?
(headline) Farm Talk 12/1/93
"HIGH-YIELD" FARMING BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, KFB SPEAKER
Contrary to what the environmental zealots say, high-yield
farming has made the greatest contribution to save the
"High-yield farming today is feeding twice as many people as
the planet supported in the 1950's, and feeding them better
diets and doing it without using more cropland, "according to
Dennis Avery, director of the Hudson Institute's Center for
Global Food Issues. "High-yield farming is already saving 10
million square miles of wildlife habitat."
Avery was the keynote speaker during one session at the Kansas
Farm Bureau's 75th annual meeting. More than 1,000 farmers and
ranchers, including delegates from 103 Kansas counties, are
attending the three-day convention.
Without high-yield farming, 15-16 million square miles, or a
land area equivalent to the Western Hemisphere, would be put
under the plow, Avery said. Today, 5.8 million square miles of
land are under cultivation.
"High-yield farming is a hunger triumph," Avery told Farm
Bureau members. "Without it we would have massive famines.
Today, modern agriculture is losing its battle to organic
farming, which is considered by some to be the only politically
correct way to produce food."
In the next 50 years, organic farming would need another 25-30
million square miles of wildlife habitat to produce the food for
the people of the world, Avery said. The land area needed would
include North America, Europe and most of Asia.
Avery encouraged Kansas farmers to take the offensive and point
out the dangers of low-yield farming -- more cancer, more soil
erosion and loss of massive tracts of wildlife habitat.
"Tell the public organic farming is far more dangerous to their
health than using farm chemicals," Avery said. "Tell the world
that organic farming would mean more molds and toxins and fewer
fruits and vegetables in their diets."
Without high-yield farming, those environmental zealots who
want to add to the endangered species list may one day wake up
without food to eat.
"They may wind up needing dolphins for food," Avery said.
High-yield farming presents the greatest opportunity in
history. Farmers are using herbicides for wee control instead
of plows and "bare-earth" farming, he said. Biotechnology can
radically increase the speed of plant and animal breeding.
"We can also use the biotechnology pioneered for farming to
create the first truly high yielding forest plantations, with
yields 15 to 20 times as high as natural forests," Avery said.
He told Farm Bureau members to abandon the argument that they
are the world's greatest hunger fighters.
"Don't feel guilty and promise to do a better job in fighting
world hunger," Avery said. "American consumers don't really
believe their supermarkets will ever run out of food."
With the latest technology, wise conservation practices and the
continued safe use of herbicides and insecticides, agriculture
will continue to provide consumers with the healthiest, most
abundant food available in the world.
(Headline) SUBSIDIES TO COST FARMERS NEW MARKET, AVERY SAYS
By Steve Painter, The Wichita Eagle 11/20/93
American agriculture is likely to forfeit a potential $100
billion-a-year market in Asia if farmers insist on controlling
production and preserving $9 billion a year in government
subsidy payments, a former top State Department official said
Thursday in Wichita.
Several Asian countries with a total population of 2.5 billion
people are poised to see income growth similar to that of Japan,
Taiwan, and Korea, and that income will allow them to greatly
improve their diet, said Dennis Avery, who was food policy
analyst for the State Department during the Reagan
administration and an Agriculture Department official before
American farmers are in the best position to meet the increased
demand, but agriculture policy in the United States and around
the globe is likely to prevent that from happening, Avery said
at the Kansas Agri Business Expo at Century II in down town
Wichita. The expo continues today.
"It is the last big surge in world food demand. Once Asia's
well-fed, that's it," Avery said.
As income grows in Indonesia, China, Thailand and other
countries, their governments will come under pressure to protect
the interest of their own farmers through trade barriers and to
move toward food self-sufficiency, he said. If that happens, it
will come at a great environmental cost to those heavily
populated countries, he said.
Avery thinks the Asian governments would be willing to forgo
farm-trade barriers in exchange for free access to
industrialized markets for their manufacturers, which would
boost the standard of living in those countries.
The United States, he said, could make that happen through
direct free-trade agreements or by forcing additional reductions
in farm subsidies through GATT, the General Agreement on Tariffs
But Avery said American farmers probably are no willing to give
up their own subsidy payments, which come with a requirement
that some of their land be idled.
"We could get on the sidelines by our own set-aside policies,"
he said. "It kills me to see the American farmer bought off by
$9 billion a year in payments that are only going to shrink."