LDAF responds to presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg’s remarks on agriculture

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NEW YORK, NY – NOVEMBER 13: Outgoing Mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg speaks at the opening ceremony of Four World Trade Center, the first tower to open at the original site of the World Trade Center, on November 13, 2013 in New York City. The building was designed by Fumihiko Maki, has 72 floors, is 978 feet tall and offers 2,500,000 square feet of space. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

A 2016 video of presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg talking about farming has surfaced. In the video Bloomberg states, “I could teach anybody to be a farmer…you dig a hole, put seed in, put dirt on top, add water, up comes corn. You learn that. “

In a statement on Monday, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said, “Mr. Bloomberg, your simplified comment on what it takes to be a farmer shows a true lack of knowledge of today’s farmers and the daunting tasks of feeding and clothing the world.”

According to LDAF farmers deal with many challenges, including weather, disease, pests, equipment costs, and instability in the market place. Farmers are constantly looking for sustainable ways to work the land. Farmers must adjust to weather conditions such as floods, freezes and droughts. LDAF stressed that farmers must also know the business of agriculture.

In the statement LDAF stated, “There are no days off in farming. For many farmers, it is their passion. It is what they were born into. It is what they know. And for that, we should all be grateful. But by no means is it as easy as digging a hole.”

In a statement Tuesday, a spokesman from the Bloomberg campaign’s Louisiana office claimed the Democratic challenger’s remarks were taken out of context:

“The Trump team cut off the first part of Mike’s sentence where he said ‘if you think about the agrarian society [that] lasted 3000 years, we could teach processes.’ Mike wasn’t talking about today’s farmers at all, and Team Trump is deliberately misleading Americans because Donald Trump’s erratic policies have devastated American farms, including a 20% increase in US Farm bankruptcies last year. Donald Trump inherited his wealth yet bankrupted businesses in cities around the world. As President, he’s hurting American farms, and he knows that Mike Bloomberg has the skills to fix the problem.”

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