Agricultural production and processing have changed rapidly and often as the world’s population has exploded. It is estimated that in the 1940’s one American farmer fed about 19 other people. Today that number is as high as 155 people fed by each farmer.
But there is more to agriculture than food production.
Today’s farmers raise crops that end up as fuel for cars, trucks, tractors, trains and even aircraft. They also produce fibers used for clothing, industrial products, building materials and more. Even ag processing leftovers have value in the form of things like glycerin and dried distiller’s grains.
To survive in changing times and to move agricultural products into new places takes innovation. That is what AURI is highlighting this year at Farmfest 2011 at the Gilfillan Estate near Redwood Falls. We will be showcasing agricultural innovations in bio-based products, biofuels, food product development and coproduct utilization. There will be food samples, demonstrations and a whole lot of information about what is developing in terms of innovative agriculture. Farmfest 2011 runs August 2-4. AURI’s exhibit can be found on lot 612.
Today’s farmer not only feeds over 150 people, they also provide fuel for the state’s commerce, raw materials for industrial products of all types as well as jobs and economic development in communities throughout the state. In most cases agriculture has not only survived changing times, it has recognized that change offers the opportunity to be innovative.