Letter to the Editor
The simple answer is, most Americans take it for granted.
The question posed was, "How important is it for Americans food to be home grown?"
The American consumer has become accustomed to an abundance of multiple foods at reasonably cheap prices. As American companies move into multiple growing regions throughout the world, the safety of year around fruits and vegetables have become more reliable and safer. 
The American farmers biggest competitor is not farmers from other growing regions, but rather our state and local government. With labor rates being adjusted from the government, rather then from competition, this puts the American farmer at a government-driven disadvantage compared to farmers from around the world.
High labor rates and labor shortages over centuries, have driven innovation.  Technology has given all farmers the tools to achieve new heights, while lowering the need for many labor positions. 
The problem is cost, remember, farmers provide cheap food, which means very low margins.
American farmers enjoy many fruits and vegetables from around the world as much as everyone else.  All we ask is, that we be given a fair playing platform.
Alex Jack

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