Shudder to think

When Michelle Obama and a bunch of schoolchildren broke ground on a White House kitchen garden in March, she said it was going to be organic. This prompted the Mid-America CropLife Association (MACA), which represents chemical agriculture companies, to write her a letter congratulating her on “recognizing the importance of agriculture in America.”

The letter, written by MACA executive director Bonnie McCarvel, went on to say, “We live in a very different world than that of our grandparents. Americans are juggling jobs with the needs of children and aging parents. The time needed to tend a garden is not there for the majority of our citizens, certainly not a garden of sufficient productivity to supply much of a family’s year-round food needs.”

McCarvel wrapped up her letter saying, “We respectfully encourage you to recognize the role conventional agriculture plays in the U.S. in feeding the ever-increasing population, contributing to the U.S. economy and providing a safe and economical food supply.” Not quite so tactful was the email message McCarvel tacked on when forwarding the letter to MACA’s supporters: “While the garden is a great idea, the thought of it being organic made Janet Braun, CropLife Ambassador Coordinator, and I shudder.”

Read MACA’s full letter