he publication of the recent BASF Farm Perspectives Survey reveals a consumer base that is interested in and respectful of farmers and the farm sector.
The survey, which interviewed almost 2,000 farmers and over 6,000 consumers in the United States, Brazil, France, Germany, India, and Spain, revealed many deep misgivings about farming, but also a great deal of popular support.
Despite the farming populations of most of these industrial or post-industrial nations being small, less than 2 percent of several of these country’s populations, personal respect for farmers remains high, with many consumers and farmers agreeing that their job involves “feeding the world.” In addition, many farmers and consumers tended to associate farming with protecting rural culture and caring for the land.
However, the study did reveal several misgivings about the farm sector. A significant minority of consumers, about 20 percent in Germany and the United States and between 30 and 40 percent in India, France, and Brazil, blame farmers and agricultural production for environmental degradation.
Another problem revealed by the study were the attitudes consumers held towards conservation and the environment. A large minority in all the countries surveyed were unwilling to pay higher prices in order to obtain sustainable and environmentally friendly crops. Some farmers expressed frustration at these conflicting positions held by consumers (who blamed farmers for environmental problems but are unwilling to pay to fix them).
Follow us on: Twitter
Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer