Two Nebraska farmers: There’s enough room for GM and organic agriculture

For Scott Kinkaid and Tim Nissen, the arguments over genetically modified food hit close to home.

Kinkaid grows soybeans and corn on a 1,380-acre tract about 12 miles outside of Hartington in northeast Nebraska. The crops sprout each year on a parcel that surrounds the farmhouse his family has lived in for three generations. He, like the vast majority of farmers in Nebraska, plants seeds for the crops that are genetically modified. But Nissen has taken a different route. He raises alfalfa, corn, soybeans, oats, sunflowers and cover crops on a 350-acre plot of certified organic soil about 20 miles to the northeast. Perhaps fittingly for someone who goes his own way, Nissen’s land sits off the two-lane Outlaw Trail.

Kinkaid, 55, and Nissen, 38, who know and speak highly of each other, have deep roots in their land. They watched their fathers and grandfathers till and harvest in Cedar County. But these farmers, living just miles apart, think there is enough room in the Farm Belt for both kinds of agriculture. They each say they just want to provide consumers with what they want while supporting their community and themselves.

“I really don’t see it as an organic versus GMO debate. I just don’t see it that way. I see it more as customers, consumers, dictating what they want and farmers supplying whatever that need may be,” Nissen said. Like Nissen, Kinkaid believes in the power of competition and producers selling to consumers what the consumers demand.

Read the full, original article: A tale of two Nebraska farmers: One grows genetically modified crops, the other commits to organic

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