Tag: food crisis
Nov 03 2009
Apr 21 2008
[Crossposted from Fire on the Mountain.]
Some kind of quantity changing into quality point has been reached–suddenly the newspapers are full of "in-depth" reports on the global food crisis, a crisis that seems to have sprung up as suddenly as the credit crisis did a few months ago. I've been tracking this for a while and decided to think on the keyboard instead of out loud. I think it is important to try and understand this while it is a New Thing, before it becomes more background noise in world politics and our daily lives.
1. Production shortages and inflation are two major factors in the crisis.
What's causing the shortages?
Global warming is widely regarded as a contributing factor in droughts which have stricken not only subsistence farmers in East Africa, but also major commodity grain producers in the Southern Hemisphere–Chile, Argentina, and especially Australia, with thousands of square miles in their eighth straight year with no rainfall to speak of.
Growing Asian economies, especially in China and India, have made possible better and more diverse diets for hundreds of millions of people. This growing demand for food has additionally seen rising meat consumption by the middle class (echoing US consumption trends), and, as vegetarians are quick to point out, it takes 16 pounds of grain to produce a pound of beef.
Mar 27 2008
Today I learned the news. The world already has a food crisis, an enormous problem, possible social upheavals, perhaps even a “perfect storm.” Add that to your gas tank!
I’d heard bits about grain prices for a while, been shocked at prices of bread, eggs, flour and cheese–even soup! Silly me, I thought I could stock upon a few items and make do. Just about everything is going up and not just a little. I try not to panic but it’s not easy living on a small fixed income since I rather like to eat.
Frightening implications abound for the poorest of the poor the world over as a new UN Report makes clear. There’s a lot happening that we do not hear about from our pathetic media. Just as one woman says she knew she was poor, but “this is worse than poverty,” a UN official says watch for the “new face of hunger.”
Follow below for a little tour, a tiny glimpse of what’s going on, if you dare, if you care.