Hello everyone. Welcome to our new website! My name is Nick and I’m the director of KNOW GMO the movie and LEARN GMO the series. Thank you so much for joining me on our team’s trip around the world to learn more about food and farming. Based on what we’ve already shot, we can tell you there are plenty of amazing things to learn.
This project started when two of my passions collided. Ever since I was a kid and got my first camera I’ve wanted to be a filmmaker and tell stories. I’m definitely a bit of a millennial liberal, so I care about the state of the world. Most importantly, my wife Toni and I have a son, Elliot, so our interest in food has only increased. My Dad’s career in Agriculture has exposed me to the debate between Genetic Engineering and Organic production, and that is what led us to begin this project.
Besides my passion for storytelling, I also care about being reasonable and open to new information. Growing up I learned that it was best to collect information from a wide range of perspectives and see where they intersect. In this story it’s important to know who accepts influences and who is using scientific principles to stay clear of bias. Our production uses peer-reviewed science wherever available and we took no money from any chemical or seed companies–we raised our money from donations from family farmers. Why? In the end every farmer needs to find common ground with their neighbours, even if they happen to take a different approach to farming. Our project looks into why Organic and Conventional Agriculture exist and into how helpful or dangerous technologies like Genetic Engineering might be.
Fortunately when framed this way, the answers were often more obvious than we thought. We learned that the resistance to any idea has far less to do with the technical aspects of the science and more to do with social structures. The world needs action, so this website and my work are very much about breaking open our individual echo chambers in favour of a more inclusive and complete conversation. That’s why our logo includes a Venn Diagram. Conversation is what bridges two sides and it creates the overlap necessary for us to reach understanding. This website is where that conversation will take place. Follow us to see and hear each story as it unfolds.
We don’t want to tell you how to think, but we all need to open up to using reason to cut through all the rhetoric out there. We found a lot of biased information from very popular sources and we want to highlight those cases, and replace bad information with strong science. Knowledge is power after all, and none of us wants to be the weakling at a party for spouting some false fact. In this food debate both sides have made mistakes and widened the gap in understanding, so we’re not picking favourites. In the end, we all need farmers to have access to every tool they can get their hands on, because we all need to eat.
There’s a lot more good news in this food story than you might expect, and there’s also some stuff that might make you angry. We’ll show you both, and if you stick with us we can pretty much guarantee that we’ll all learn amazing things every single episode.
Here’s Episode One, Part One. This is where I learned that being rationally optimistic about the future is the only way to rationalize choosing to bring the next generation into the world. If you have a kid, watch this. And thanks for being here.