Thursday, April 29, 2004

April 28, 2004

Faces of Agriculture
(970) 481-1389

Illinois budget cuts putting local farm families in jeopardy

Springfield, Ill. – Drivers in the Springfield area can now see a mobile, visual reminder that their state’s largest industry -- and the people responsible for feeding this country -- faces serious jeopardy at the hands of their government leaders.

Faces of Agriculture, a national non-profit organization, has purchased one of 12 rotating billboards on the innovative Gotcha Mobile Media Truck, which travels Springfield’s streets reminding residents of the importance of food production in Illinois.

Agriculture is a multi-billion dollar industry in Illinois that employs one out of four workers statewide, and Faces of Agriculture’s mural displays a farm scene, the group’s Web site ( and slogan, “Securing our future in food production.”

“My family has farmed in Illinois since 1852, but that may be coming to an end,” said Trent Loos, Faces of Ag founder. “Consumers need to realize the value of having their food grown right here in Illinois. If we have to rely on imported food someday, the quality and safety of our food supply could be compromised.”

Loos noted that Illinois farmers have traditionally passed their land and their lifestyle to the next generation. However, the ability of future generations to feed the world from Illinois farmland is in danger, thanks to Gov. Rod Blagojevich’s proposed budget cuts, which include dissolving the Illinois Council on Food and Agricultural Research and eliminating tax breaks for farm machinery fuel.

The impact of such cuts could end up eliminating entire farms in Illinois, Loos said, forcing consumers to rely more on imported foods, which are not produced under the quality control standards required by the FDA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Springfield area residents are urged to contact their legislators and Gov. Blagojevich to protect an industry that is a mainstay in the state and essential for U.S. national security.

For more information, visit or call (970) 481-1389. For more information about Gotcha Mobile Media, contact Rob Tedrow at (217) 753-2000.


Faces of Agriculture is a non-profit organization with the mission of returning the human element to food production in America.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

This was submitted to me by C.S. Elliott for printing in Loos Lips.

American Farmer

Before heading home the farmer takes one last look at the
green and brown patchwork fields laid out like a quilt
covering mother earth and then directs his gaze toward the
shy and says thank you Lord, for another good day.
A big old yellow dog slowly wags his tail as he waits
impatiently watching for the combine to come home and park in
the lean-to. Soon the wagging tail stops then speeds up as
the combine comes round the bend and into view.
The dog spots the old familiar weathered hand of the farmer
grasping the bar to swing down from the great machine that
plucks food from the earth. After many years of working the
land the farmers hand has taken on the characteristics of the
hard dry soil.

The soil that has become a part of him just like a vital
organ. But now his old tired bones ache from the long days
ride and he stretches his back as he descends the great
machine to place his foot firmly upon the earth. One small
step for man, one giant leap for mankind.
He pats his awaiting companion on the head while
murmuring "We got another field done old boy, now lets go see
what's cooking".

Together they slowly drift towards the kitchen light like a
moth drawn to a flane, they inhale deeply as the door comes
nearer. The smell attacks their nostrils, makes their mouths
water and reminds them how the day is long.
Shedding all his worries with the old worn boots at the back
door the farmer makes his way to the bathroom to wash off
some of the corn dust and sunshine.

Across the supper table he sees his wifes' smiling face, the
nourishing food that he grew and his spirit begins to renew
itself. For with the rooster crow comes a new day and the
opportunity to feed and clothe America. And the farmers feels
the pride in his work and is glad to be an American farmer.
The end.
by C.S. Elliott