It’s important that farmers tell their own story.
That’s according to former Iowa lawmaker Erik Helland, a board member for Protect the Harvest, which he said was founded as a counter point to the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS).
“Ag policy was really being shaped by those that are removed from the food stream, and for those of us in the ag community, that’s concerning,” said Helland. “It’s our job to go out and educate the public on it, because if we don’t, HSUS will, and at the end of the day they’re not going to paint us in the light that is accurate.”
Protect the Harvest grew out of the Missouri Farmers Care effort to defeat an HSUS-backed measure put before Missouri voters. Helland sees the group’s mission as drawing a line in the sand in defense of farming and hunting.
“Not just stopping bad legislation, but also promoting the right to farm, the right to hunt,” said Helland. “I think it’s important that we in the ag community don’t just play defense, but we actually go out and start explaining ourselves.”
Much of the funding for Protect the Harvest has been provided so far by Lucas Oil CEO Forrest Lucas, said Helland.