• Holly Spangler

    Top 10 Facts About Biotech Crops

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on March 12, 2014

    Occasionally, tidbits of info cross my desk and I think to myself: well, there's something to save. Like this list. It's a roundup of the top 10 facts about biotech crops, as reported in a new article by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications, a very reliable international group that's tracked biotech crops for years. Sidenote: are you on Pinterest? In the last few months, I've started a Pinterest board to keep track of some of these bits of…

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  • Holly Spangler

    Five Things about GMOs

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on November 26, 2013

    Five resources for when you hear… 1. GMOs cause tumors. In rats. Special French rats. You know, I can see what this one has gotten traction. Rats with super giant GM-fueled tumors growing from their heads? Those are the kinds of phrases activists dream of. But even other French scientists couldn't get on board with it. The New York Times reported last year that France's six scientific academies issued a "rare joint statement" dismissing the rat study. The leader of the…

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  • Holly Spangler

    Heck No, GMO!

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on September 23, 2013

    Hands down, this is the best story I've heard in a long time. Some of our farmer friends took a vacation out east this summer and part of their trip included a jaunt through Boston. Somewhere in that city, on a lovely summer afternoon, they came across a stand set up by Stonyfield Organic and offering up free yogurt. They thought, "Hey, free yogurt. Our kids love yogurt." As they approached, the plot thickened. The Stonyfield folks had placards that read, "Heck…

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  • Holly Spangler

    Monsanto Did Not Pay Me to Write This

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on August 30, 2013

    Among many lovely conversations with readers at the Farm Progress Show this week, one exchange has had me thinking, ever since. He began with a statement: "You have written a couple columns about biotechnology." I confirmed that as true. He followed up with a question: "So you have to tow the party line? Or do you believe what you wrote?" I asked him to clarify and he responded, "Someone's paying you to write that? You don't really believe that…

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  • Holly Spangler

    Is the Customer Always Right?

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on July 18, 2013

    At last month's Food Dialogues (recap here and here), North Carolina farmer Bo Stone told the story of a group of non-ag folks visiting his farm. They'd finished the tour and were about to leave when one individual looked at him and said, "Ok. Now, I think I understand this: the white eggs come from the hens, and the brown eggs come from the roosters. Right?" Uh. No. The story drew a laugh from the largely agricultural crowd, as it has each time I've shared it…

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  • Holly Spangler

    GMO-No: Farmers Are Not Stupid

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on April 26, 2013

    You know, some days I just get tired. Tired of the accusations, tired of the misinformation, tired of the same old tired arguments. Monsanto's corporate agenda is driving takeover of the world's seed supplies. Farmers can no longer save seeds - and coincidentally the price of corn, soy and cotton seeds have skyrocketed. I personally hate anything treated with Pesticides or any other chemical and GMO foods of any kind. They stack more kinds of herbicides in sprays…

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  • Holly Spangler

    Biotechnology, Amish and a Big Ol' Mea Culpa

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on January 7, 2013

    There's been a shift in the universe. Maybe you felt it, too? Last week, Mark Lynas, former anti-GM activist, announced in a lecture at an Oxford farming conference that he was, well, wrong. "I want to start with some apologies. For the record, here and upfront, I apologise for having spent several years ripping up GM crops. I am also sorry that I helped to start the anti-GM movement back in the mid 1990s, and that I thereby assisted in demonising an important technological…

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  • Holly Spangler

    30 Days on a Prairie Farm: Biotechnology, Again

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on November 5, 2012

    So, California votes on Proposition 37 tomorrow. And while we talked about biotechnology and genetically-modified seeds last week, it appears there's still more ground to cover. Because as discussions regarding GM seed and labeling of GM products continue to develop, a common thread regarding research continues to emerge. Specifically, I see these four areas come up when consumers are concerned about their GM crops: Farmer Suicides in India Rats in France Monsanto is…

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  • Holly Spangler

    30 Days on a Prairie Farm: Biotechnology

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on November 2, 2012

    Fear. Misinformation. Marketing. Fear. Health. Children. Fear. Fear. All this and more is playing into the discussion involving GMOs these days. And here on the farm, it feels like old news. Fifteen-plus years ago, we evaluated the technology, learned we could plant it and use fewer and less-potent pesticides, have fewer weeds and less required labor. It was a business decision. We got on board. We've gone on to plant Bt corn (using products from DuPont, Syngenta and Monsanto…

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  • Holly Spangler

    GMOs, Dr. Oz and Real Scientists

    My Generation

     by Holly Spangler
     on October 19, 2012

    Here's what I like to see: straightforward conversations about food and technology. No backroom deals. No agendas. No one side negotiating for more airtime, or re-recording a statement so no one can contradict them. A look at real science by real scientists. And certainly, I haven't watched daytime TV since, well, I can't remember when. But I have read enough of Dr. Oz to know neither I, nor anyone else, can logically expect to get sound diet or medical advice from him. And as an aside, who…

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