Famine is the new F word, farming, fishing and other food issues
Today is World Food Day.
The pages of My Custard Pie are usually filled with recipes and food-related experiences from a privileged point of view. That is having enough money to buy food and abundant food to choose from. This is not the case in huge swathes of our world. On a day where thousands of bloggers are joining a global discussion about food, I would like to add my voice. I believe that we should be very concerned at the amount of influence multi-national corporations have on food policy, quality, safety, animal welfare and the supply chain as their decisions are primarily based on increasing shareholder value. I also believe we can and should make a difference:
If you haven’t seen this movie, watch it today. It will change the way you look at your food forever:
Price swings, upswings in particular, represent a major threat to food security in developing countries. Hardest-hit are the poor. According to the World Bank, in 2010-2011 rising food costs pushed nearly 70 million people into extreme poverty. “FOOD PRICES – FROM CRISIS TO STABILITY” has been chosen as this year’s World Food Day theme. Read more…
The World Development Movement’s comprehensive report on food speculation.
Banks and the trade in food commodities.
Goldman Sachs and the food speculation frenzy.
Wall Street, food speculation, and grain reserves.
The link between food speculation and high food prices.
How food speculation has impacted on Mexico’s maize farmers – and fuelled a tortilla crisis.
Why we need to regulate food speculation.
How to take action against banks involved in food speculation. *
*Many thanks to Tangerine and Cinnamon for these links.
Organisations tackling world hunger
Campaigns for sustainability and animal welfare
Fish stocks are in crisis worldwide with many species severely threatened yet half the fish caught in the North Sea are thrown back into the sea, dead, due to EU fishing laws. Due to public support of this campaign, in July, the European Commission published their proposals for a new Common Fisheries Policy and they included recommendations for a discard ban. This would not have happened without the pressure of the Fish Fight. But that doesn’t mean that the law will actually change. There is another 18 months to go before the new Common Fisheries Policy becomes law, which is why Hugh went back to Brussels to launch the Fish Fight campaign in another 11 languages and countries. The pressure he generates across Europe could be the difference between success and failure, long-term sustainable fisheries or more years of pointless waste.
Sign up with Hugh’s Fish Fight today.
Other organisations lobbying on fish issues and sustainability:
I’d also recommend Jake Tilson’s book In at the Deep End
Through the Chicken Out! campaign, Compassion in World Farming are reaching out to consumers, politicians, producers and retailers to put an end to the intensive ‘factory’ farming of chickens. This ranges from lobbying to demanding clear and honest labelling so that customers can make an informed choice at the till.
There are around 360 million egg-laying hens in the European Union (EU) and more than two-thirds of them are confined in barren battery cages. Thanks to a vigorous campaign, on 1 January 2012, the EU ban on barren battery cages comes into force. By that day, all laying hens in the EU should be out of these cages.
However, with less than one year to go until the ban comes into force, some countries around Europe are still a long way from complying with the new legislation.
The trouble with trans-fats – read about it here
Listen to it here
Food Poverty (UK)
Blog Action Day
Since 2007, Blog Action Day has focused bloggers around the world to blog about one important global topic on the same day. Past topics have included water, climate change and poverty.
This year, Blog Action Day is on October 16, which coincides with World Food Day, so the 2011 theme is food. I registered for Blog Action Day 2011 to join in the global discussion about food. Follow #BAD11 on Twitter.
Changing things starts with small actions. Sponsoring a child in Africa, trying not to waste food, sending an email to a Euro PM (…you might be surprised, I got a personal response) and making the best choice you can at the till.
Thank you for reading; if there is anything that’s struck a chord please leave a comment. Normal format returns next time.