Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Mom Blogger asks “Dr. Oz – Where’s the Farmer?”

I recently read a post by Confessions of a Farm Wife, regarding Dr. Mehmet Oz’ promotion of food fear asking “Hey Oz! Where’s the farmer? She listed six reasons Dr. Oz hasn’t invited “an educated, well intentioned farmer to sit on a panel: Money, Spin, Pop Culture, Fear, Justification and a Reason, Pride. I found her insight interesting and encourage you to check out her post.


What are your thoughts on Dr. Oz’ portrayal of food, farmers and farming?   

Today, food quality and safety are better than ever. Our food choices are more abundant than any time in history. Farming methods, animal care and environmental sustainability have improved and continue to improve. For example, today it takes less land, water, feed and resources to produce a gallon of milk than it did 50 years ago. 

Scenes from our dairy farm

Despite these improvements, food fear seems to get a lot of attention. There are many books, movies and TV shows dedicated to “warning” people about food and farming. Why all this fear about food? Why the need to promote mistrust of farming methods? Maybe the bigger question is why do people seem quick to buy into negative stories about food and farming?

I feel very confident purchasing, and feeding my family, products that come from the grocery store. I trust the food supply in this country. I know how animals are cared for, how much detail goes into planning an animal's diet, and how many rules are in place to insure food safety. I know almost every farm in this country is owned by a family who cares about the food they are producing. Farming has evolved and improved from one generation to the next. New methods and technology are a good thing, not something to be feared.

Generations of Hastings family dairy farmers: Chief, Duane, Lad, Jack

The dairy farming community is trying to connect and share information with people who have questions. We know less than 2% of our population works in agriculture and that very few people have ever met a farmer or visited a farm. Wonder who’s producing your milk? Click here to meet a dairy farmer!


If you have questions about why dairy farmers do certain things on their farms, just ask. Click here for a list of dairy producer bloggers – they would love to hear from you! 

If you have questions about food, check out these reliable sources.

When it comes to information about food and farming, more is better. I hope I’ve provide some resources you can use to make the best food choices for you and your family.


  1. Comsumers need to educate themselves and not listen to all the media hype. If you have never raised an animal or grown your own food it is a difficult thing to understand. Milk does not just show up at Giant Eagle.

  2. You don't abuse your animals... you're one of the good ones.
    Would not have a problem getting meat or dairy from you.
    It's the factory farmers that are getting way out of control and do not care about the animal.
    They truly suffer. Please check out MERCY FOR ANIMALS website about farm animals.
    HEART BREAKING!! Why aren't these hell factories shut down?? Why are they abusing these defensless creatures on top of a horrible life?? WHO IS BEING HELD ACCOUNTABLE
    and prosecuted?? Sorry, but this has sickened me. Where are the laws for them?? I wish all could only have farms like you. Please give some insight on this. Thanks.

    1. Thank you for finding my blog. It upsets me, and other dairy farmers, to see poor treatment of animals. Excellent animal care is the right thing to do and makes sense morally and from a business perspective. Why would a dairy farmer harm a cow when we work daily to care for them? Our farm is similar to many other dairy farms across the country; almost all dairy farms are owned and operated by families who care about how their cows are treated and the quality of milk they produce. Dairy farms come in a variety of sizes, some as small as 10 cows and some as large as 10,000 cows. I grew up on a large dairy farm (milking about 3,000 cows). The one thing all the dairy farmers I know have in common is the goal of providing the best care possible to their animals.

      On occasion, I’ve heard about a farm employee mistreating an animal. This is the exception, not the rule. I don’t know of any dairy farmer who would continue to employ a person who mistreats animals. This is not acceptable. Please use caution when looking to a group like Mercy for Animals for information about dairy farming. They are a special interest group with the goal of promoting a vegan lifestyle. They are not an accurate source for information about dairy farming. I appreciate you taking the time to get the perspective of a dairy farmer!


Thank you for reading my blog and taking the time to comment! I’m opening the doors of our farm to share with you and enjoy engaging in discussion. Please be respectful in your comments. I reserve the right to remove posts that include name calling, slander, and vulgar language or contain links to websites that assault animal agriculture.

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