Thanks For Our Blessings

It takes considerable knowledge just to realize the extent of your own ignorance. - Thomas Sowell

Imagine if you will, you get up in the morning. Stepping into your kitchen you turn on the light, open the refrigerator, get some items out, turn on the stove burner and make a delicious breakfast. None of these resources happened at all by accident.

Take your morning omelet with veggies, cheese and smothered in lots of Green Chile. Were they in your refrigerator by accident? No, each represents thousands of research and development hours along with the time it took to design the various systems. We rarely think of this. The electricity that was waiting for you to flip the switch was ready without you realizing that thousands of people made it possible. Someone invented the stove, refrigerator, light and even kitchen table. Even more amazing is the agricultural bounty that we often take for granted. The eggs, cheese, Chile, and other agricultural products you use didn’t end up in your home by accident. We rarely think of it.

The truth is that for the most part we Americans are ignorant as to how all of this works. Can anyone really tell me that as they open a jar of delicious Chile, they have a good idea of the steps necessary for the jar to be in their pantry?

First, this year’s seeds must have been harvested in previous years from Chile plants certified to produce great Chile. They must be ready for next year’s plantings. The seeds are planted in fields prepared for the upcoming Chile growing season. The spacing, types of plants, fertilizer, weed control, special watering methods such as flood irrigation or drip methods, and projected date of harvest are just a few of the Farmer’s concerns including weather, plant viruses and insects. There are issues that are only in the hands of God. How do you plan for the effects of hail damage? You just farm on with a new crop if the damage is profound, which often it is.

Getting the Harvest going at exactly the right time with enough workers does not happen by accident. Then the Chile Peppers must be Flame-Roasted, processed, placed in a container that is sanitary and sealed. The shipping department must take the order, seal the package with a label and have the shipment picked up for delivery.

The delicious Chile on your omelet has literally thousands of steps which must be done correctly, or you would not have your favorite Breakfast food. To all the Chile Farmers and processors, I say: thank you for what you do.

Likewise, I stop and thank a long list of people who allow me to live so well and so long. First, our military and police forces that keep us free. I also live well beyond the years I expected because of the researchers and practitioners in our medical community that keeps me going despite me not always being compliant. Thanks to all the Research Universities that over the last century have increased agricultural production and efficiency so that Ranchers and Farmers can still be in business.

I made Beef Jerky this last weekend which was marinated in Green Chile, so it is a tribute to both Chile Farmers and Ranchers along with the power people that provided the power for my food dryer. It is Yum. I look up at power lines at times and say a prayer for the workers who built these power lines and keep the electricity on so that I can write my columns.

If you have any question or comments, please don't hesitate to reach out to me, Michael Swickard, by email at Thank you for reading, and Eat More Chile!

Written by Michael Swickard, Ph.D.
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