I am as far removed from agricultural production as one can be. Due to my recent appreciation of the centrality of agriculture to our life, I began watching Georgia Public Broadcasting’s Farm Monitor (Twitter & Facebook & YouTube) to learn more. I’ve really enjoyed the show, and I’ve been telling people about it & sharing clips on social media. Nevertheless, recent episodes have promoted industrial/pharmacological agriculture, and I’ve begun to think about the show more critically.
In none of these segments does Farm Monitor authentically represent opposition positions.
My second criticism is how there is no coverage of agricultural labor. There are often scenes of non-white workers picking fruit off of trees, but, in the months I’ve been watching the show, I’ve never heard a segment about the conditions and concerns of these workers. Are they not farmers? Are they not critical to agriculture? Perhaps the show should do a segment highlighting the work of the Farmworker Rights Division of Georgia Legal Services.
Let me end this blog entry by confirming that I like this show. It introduces me to topics of which I know nothing. Nevertheless, if the show is broadcast on Georgia Public Broadcasting, it can’t address topics such as pesticides, conditions of animals in industrial agriculture and human-caused climate change without properly presenting the potential harms in which agriculture as practiced is implicated.