We have a wake-up process happening with consumers,” by Uli Hack (published in the January 19, 2016 issue of The Ontario Farmer)


Dear editor:

In response to Terry Daynard’s article about “the lesser known challenge of food over-abundance,” I want to share what I consider a more holistic point of view.

This would serve our environment well at the same time, as fertilizer loads in rivers and lakes could be reduced, and pesticide use could be reduced also. It seems that we do not really need that high production now, but rather in the anticipated future.

Producing fertilizers requires a lot of energy. We know that oil and coal are limited resources that we are using to create the current overabundance of food and their availability might be missed when we really need them to feed the anticipated population. In that respect I feel that organic agriculture does great pioneer work in learning how to grow without the availability of fertilizer and chemicals.

The chem

ical agriculture has also substantially reduced the humus levels in the last century, which is a major factor for good fertile soil that will be needed in the future. I am not sure if they are able to reverse that trend now with no-till. Chemical agriculture is a great reliable production system if we do not consider the human health and environmental impacts and are satisfied that it is government-approved. Terry Daynard must have good genes and a healthy upbringing. My mom died of cancer at 49 and my Dad died at 69. He was very sick from chemical exposure at age 30, which made h

im see the shortcomings of chemical agriculture, and he converted to organic at age 40, after having seen a successful organic farm. Many organic farmers had witnessed health problems related to the chemicals. That opened their eyes, heart and mind to a

We also have that wake-up process happening with many consumers. Our cancer rate is now that every second person can expect to have cancer in his lifetime. And there is a whole stack of other diseases that were also hardly known one hundred years ago. I have heard that the average cancer patient costs our health care system $60,000. That could go a long way for some healthier food.more holistic approach.

In the Poettinger cat study, they found that when cats were fed the wrong food (cooked versus raw) they developed our typical civilization diseases like cancer, diabetes, infertility, and unsocial behaviour. These diseases became inheritable, and after seven generations of the wrong food, the cats were not able to propagate. They also studied to get the sick cats back to normal, and it also took seven generations to get rid of these “inheritable diseases.”  Could the diseases we experience be connected with the food we eat?

Our food has changed substantially over the last decades. The swathing of wheat has ceased in the prairies, and Round-up took its place. The soybeans get Round-up before wheat is planted. Corn and soy and sugar beets are now to a large extent genetically modified, with no labelling, despite the fact that I clearly remember a poll from around 1990, where 85% of consumers did not want GMO.

Hormone implants in most beef, antibiotic feed for the chickens and almost BST for the milk. Did we ever want to inform our consumers of our new practices or did we prefer to keep them in the dark and have them trust us and the government approval? I know that organic consumers are informed consumers that know what they want.

Would it not make sense to work on reducing our 40% food waste and value our food more, since all is the sacrifice of the life of an animal or plant in order to sustain us?


Ulrich Hack, Kincardine