From: Barry Drazkowski
The farm crisis should be of great concern to all of us. It affects our neighbors, our local economies, our most fundamental way of life. For the last six years farmers have lost money on their crops and herds, the median farm income for 2018 was a -1,533, and Midwest farm bankruptcies and farmer suicides are the highest in the country. This is a community issue.
Corporate farm organizations are squeezing out small family farms, reducing their income. Our farmer cooperatives, created to help small farmers band together to secure better pricing in all aspects of their operations, now function to serve the biggest farms at the expense of the small farmer. My neighbors, both large family farm operations of thousands of acres, and small family dairy operations of hundreds of acres struggle with the cost to provide family health care, forcing all of them to have a spouse work off the farm to provide this critical service. This crisis is threatening the survivability of our rural community and businesses.
I support the Minnesota-based Land Stewardship Project’s Farm Crisis statement and strategy. It demands actions that address the factors affecting the erosion of our farm-based values, lifestyles, and economies, not just in Minnesota and Wisconsin, but supported at the Federal level. I ask you to consider how important farmers are to our way of life. Read the LSP Farm Crisis statement and ACT by signing the petition (https://landstewardshipproject.org/).