Saturday, February 25, 2006

A world of contrasts, but do we care?

Above is a recent picture from the Angolan Times, 09/19/1400/angolatimes/ . Below is a photo from a university picnic somewhere in the developed world. He is obviously enjoying his food.

No doubt he would share some of his food with the person dieing in Angola if he had the chance. Why is it that international food politics, in the shape of subsidies and comparative costs in trade, allow food mountains in the west while the best land in poorer countries is used to produce export crops. The food mountains in western countries come from crop production within. The best land in poorer countries used for export crops to western supermarkets should be feeding the local population.

These anomolies produce these contrasting photos above, but do we care?


At 9:38 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes we do! We need to think about where our food comes from. Here in New York I'm always looking to buy local produce where I can.

Keep up the good work.

At 8:00 pm, Anonymous Penny said...

This is obscene isn't it? Is it true that currently, there actually is enough food in the world to feed everybody but not fairly distributed? So the UK worries about obesity in kids aged 11, while the Angolans and others starve.....what a wonderful world.

At 11:02 pm, Blogger Keith Scott said...

Yes it's obscene but is it that easy to solve? If the food from the best land doesn't get sold abroad wouldn't it just go to the wealthiest people in the country still leaving the poor with nothing? How can we make the world a more just and equal place? And where should we ourselves start? I wish I knew.

At 10:58 am, Blogger Matt Burge said...

Food should be sourced locally where possible and I'm sure it finds its way to all income brackets via markets, stalls or shops. If the poor are able to find some sort of work then they will have the currency to purchase food.

Certainly the best land should NOT go to golf clubs, flower producers and the like!

For locally sourced food campaigning see The Soil Association's web site, particularly on Farmers Markets.

At 8:47 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If the poor are able to find some sort of work then they will have the currency to purchase food"
If there ceases to be a market for their economy's principal output, what jobs will there be? And remember they don't have to earn enough just to buy food, they have to pay rent on their land and buy services such as water and electricity.
It's a right old mess, and one that we caused.

At 9:34 am, Blogger Matt Burge said...

Which is why all countries should 'diversify', rather than listen to the IMF. Nigeria seems to slowly be waking up to this notion now that their oil output is being threatened by the angry locals.


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