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B. Agriculture's Changing Economic Landscape

Narrator: This is Science Today. Over the next few decades, the nation's agricultural community will be facing a changing economic landscape. Agricultural economist, Steven Blank, of the University of California, Davis says that's because American farmers and ranchers will be facing more global competition from places like Eastern Europe, South America, China and India.

Blank: As these other countries expand their output, that means that global supplies, the total out there is up and because we have very much a global market now for a lot of agricultural commodities, the expansion in one part of the world in terms of their output will definitely affect the prices received by American producers.

Narrator: For farmers, it means continued need for technological innovation to keep pace with all the prices. For consumers, it's good news at the register.

Blank: Obviously if there's more food being produced and it's going to be higher and higher quality and more and more variety, as purchasers and consumers of food, that's a good thing. We'll have more to choose from and it's going to cost us less.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.