We look likewe could be the starring actors in an odd-couplemovie: a white guy from Denmark and a black man from South Africa.

Yet as fellow farmers, we have a lot in common.Webothwork the land. Webothworry about the weather.Webothtryto grow the best crops possible in a way that is environmentally and economically sustainable.

Wealso face differentsorts ofchallengesandEuropeans like me have a lot to learn from Africans like Motlatsi Musi.

If that sounds surprising, its becausethe legacies ofhistory and economics suggest the reverse, thanks to European colonization and commercialstrength.When it comes to agricultural technology, however, Motlatsi has a story that all of us should know.

I first heardabout his experiencein 2017, at the Global Farmer Networks annual roundtable meeting in Des Moines, Iowa. Farmers from around the worldwere invited to gather anddiscuss our mutual challenges and opportunities.

Motlatsi and I became fast friends and weve stayed in touch ever since. Iespeciallyenjoyed watching him inFood Evolution, arecentdocumentaryabout the science behind agriculture, hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Motlatsi plays a small but significantandinspiringrole in the film. He describes howGMcropshelped him succeed as a farmer, allowing him to grow more food on less land and even to send his son to college. He also offers a heartfelt message to people in the developed world: Please be informed. Whenever you say no to GM technology, you are suppressing Africa.

Motlatsi uses travel opportunities to learn as much as possible.

What he means is that European opposition togene technologyhas hurt his continent, encouraging governments to ban the technologies thathave the ability tohelp farmers no matter what their circumstances. A handful of African nations, including South Africa, haveresistedEuropes hostilitybuttoomany African farmers still live under the shadow of European influence.

We need to hearmorefrom Motlatsi. And so when Ifound outthat he would travel this fall to Rometo represent the Global Farmer Networkfor a meeting of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, I invited him to Denmark to see myfarm, where I grow a variety of crops, including wheat, barley, rye, oilseed rape, and grass seed on several hundredhectares.

More importantly, I wanted him tomeet other Danish farmers.

We Europeans like to think of ourselves as enlightened,and when it comes to farming, we have many reasons for gratitude: We live in stable and secure societies,webenefit from agood infrastructure, andaccessto all the machinery, parts, tools and inputs we need, when we need them.

Yetwe also live in atoxicpolitical environment that has rejected sound scienceand all but outlawed safe agriculture products, such as GMtechnology.

Manyof mycountrymenhave the misimpression that GMOs are just one thing: a single type of corn thats treated by a dominant crop-protection product on farms of massive scale.

In reality, agriculturalbiotechnologyisa tool of diverse potential, available in a wide range of commodities and helping both big-time farmers in advanced economies as well as smallholders in developing nations.It can fight weeds and pests as well as drought and disease.In the near future, it will do even moreeg.Improving nutrition and lowering allergy genre.

Im delighted that Motlatsi can take advantage of this modern approachand Imbothembarrassedand frustratedthat Danish farmers cannot, due to political opposition. Farmers in the EU will end up serving others like custodians in a rural museum.

Knud and Motlatsi sharing dinner with Per Pinstrup Andersen, World Food Prize Laureate.

Unfortunately, many European activist organizations havent focused onjusttheir native countries. Theyveexported theirignorance andhatred of GMOs to Africa, pressuring governments there to oppose technologies that can boost food production on a continent that lags far behind the rest of the worlda place where malnutrition and famine are routine threats.

Motlatsi shows us why theyre wrongas well aswhy we ought to encourage African nationsto take advantage of GMcropsand allow their farmers to enjoy access to this essential tool.

The more we hearMotlatsisstoryas well as stories like it from Burkina Faso, India, the Philippines, and elsewherethe more well spread the truth about technology.

At the heart of it all, though, is a lesson in the power of communication and the value of sharing stories.