Op-ed/Commentaries

Is famine the new normal?

Published February 7, 2011

Jim Harkness

Minneapolis, February 7, 2011 — When global food prices spiked in 2007-08, a hundred million people were added to the ranks of the world’s hungry, pushing the total number over 1 billion for the first time in history. Now, just two years later, we are seeing another food price hike, and more famine is...

A climate-friendly Farm Bill Climate-friendly agriculture isn’t just about cutting carbon emissions.

Published January 10, 2011

Julia Olmstead

Minneapolis, January 10, 2011* — We’re in a rut when it comes to taking action on climate change. Congress has stalled on passing climate legislation. International negotiators failed to agree on binding emission cuts in Cancún late last year. And it’s unclear whether the EPA will have the power to...

Hospitals support Minnesota farmers, purchase locally grown produce

Published December 22, 2010

Minneapolis, December 22, 2010 – Hospitals, as places of healing, have a natural incentive to provide food that’s healthy for people and the environment and to be models for healthy eating. A poor diet is a risk factor for four of the leading six causes of death nationally: heart disease, stroke, diabetes...

Climate change demands a new way to feed the world

Published December 5, 2010

Jim Harkness

REMARKS OF JIM HARKNESS, PRESIDENT, IATP DIÁLOGO CLIMÁTICO, CANCÚN, MEXICO CAncún, December 5, 2010 — I would first like to thank our Mexican hosts and say what an honor it is to appear with such an inspiring group of farm leaders from around the world. We are here in Cancún because climate change threatens the...

Healthy environments, one neighborhood at a time

Published October 7, 2010

Dr. David Wallinga

Minneapolis, October 7, 2010 — As I read this excellent report on health disparities, one voice whispers “community” in my left ear, another whispers “environment” in the right. Geographically speaking, the place where many of the upstream determinants of health mentioned in the report...

Farm to School’s teachable moment

Published October 6, 2010

JoAnne Berkenkamp

Minneapolis, October 6, 2010* — Schools throughout the country are shaking up the cafeteria through new initiatives to improve children’s health while giving a boost to local farmers. It’s time to give the mystery meat a break and bring out locally produced apples, squash, tomatoes and chicken. You...

Carbon markets: A reliable and practical source of climate finance?

Published October 5, 2010

Jim Harkness

Remarks of Jim harkness, president, IATP United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Tianjin, China Tianjin, October 5, 2010 — Thank you for joining us today. My name is Jim Harkness. I am the President of the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy. We are a 25-year-old organization that works...

Farmers’ new normal

Published September 29, 2010

Jim Harkness

Minneapolis, September 29, 2010* — The Minnesota River near Jordan is expected to reach its fifth-highest crest at 32.7 feet on Tuesday. Jordan and much of the rest of southern Minnesota were hit with some 10 inches of rain last week—flooding houses, farm fields, and shutting down highways and bridges....

The war on antibiotics: Without strict new regulations, U.S. beef, poultry and pork production could rob us of effective antibiotics

Published July 30, 2010

Ben Lilliston

Minneapolis, July 30, 2010* — Would you like some antibiotic-resistant bacteria with your grilled chicken at your backyard barbecue? Of course not. But that likelihood continues to grow unless the government makes industry change the way most American farm animals are raised. Turning many of our livestock and...

Farm futures need financial reform

Published June 23, 2010

Dr. Steve Suppan

Minneapolis, June 24, 2010 — Over the next few weeks, members of the Senate and House of Representatives will meet to iron out their differences in order to complete a historic financial reform bill. The final bill will cover a wide range of financial services, including credit cards, mortgages, payday loans and...