Land O' Lakes Pushes for Better Broadband

Farmer cooperative Land O' Lakes has teamed up with more than four dozen other entities to formalize their coalition to close the digital divide and promote better broadband, the bread-and-butter of communities rural and urban. 

Precision agriculture is one of the applications driving President Donald Trump to try and close the digital divide, which is primarily rural though not exclusively, and Land O' Lakes has plenty of experience with collective action and power. 

“All too often, farmers, business owners and even school children are disadvantaged by being on the wrong side of our country’s digital divide, a problem that has become more acute as we deal with the challenges of COVID-19,” said Beth Ford, president of Land O’Lakes, Inc., who suggests it is a coalition of those willing to admit that the country's internet infrastructure is broken and understand the ramifications of that. 

The new American Connection Project Broadband Coalition will tap those almost 50 businesses and groups across finance, tech, healthcare and food production and more.  

It said they will take "direct action" to get high-speed internet to all Americans. It has already delivered on that promise, writing a letter to Trump and congressional leaders to pass and sign “groundbreaking broadband connectivity legislation that includes the necessary resources to close the digital divide in this country.”  

In addition, Land O'Lakes has teamed up with other partners, Microsoft was one of them, to set up free Wi-Fi access points outside Land O'Lakes business locations in over 150 communities.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.