Illinois Corn Growers Association member and fellow corn farmer Howard Buffett made the news last week. Buffett is working on research farms in Illinois, Arizona, and South Africa to figure out how to produce food most efficiently in order to feed the world’s hungry. He’s also one of agriculture’s best resources to speak out in favor of technologies like genetically modified crops, as those innovations really are the key to feeding more people.
According to the blog published by Pam Fessler, NRP, Buffett tests a great many things on those research farms including soil content, planting techniques and irrigation. They're trying to learn how to make drought-prone land more productive and then figure out how to get that information to struggling farmers in Africa and elsewhere.
But Buffett is most recently interested in feeding the hungry at home. He says it didn't make sense to ignore what was going on in his own backyard. And while it might not be as obvious as elsewhere, he says, hunger in the U.S. does exist.
Buffett recalls visiting a school in his hometown of Decatur, IL where 92 percent of the students get free or reduced-price meals. He says that the irony is that the school is near the world’s largest corn plant, which processes hundreds of thousands of bushels of corn each day.
“The trains go out of town past kids that don’t get to eat every day,” he says.
Read more about your colleague and Illinois farmer, Howard Buffett, here.