Documentary, The Future of Food:
"With world population expected to increase by 2 billion people in the next 30 years, biotechnology corportions say they could provide a way to produce enough food for them"
One major problem with that, “What of the near eight-hundred million in a state of starvation in the globe every day. The reason why about that many people starve every day – and that is a tragic fact – has nothing to do with the amount of food available. Most of these people around the world that are starving used to be farmers. But because of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund giving huge loans to these countries, they could no-longer allow for subsistence farming. They had to grow expensive export crops back to the first world to pay back their loans. So they kicked all these hundreds of millions of farmers off their farms. They ended up in the Bhopals and the Mexico City's and the Brasilias of the world without money. They no-longer are growing their own food, and they're competing for the scarce jobs available in the new industrialisation of these countries. They are no-longer food-independent. They are food-dependent.”
a) The reason why about 800 million people starve every day has nothing to do with the amount of food available. The problem of hunger is not a production problem, it is an access problem. We’re, in fact, overproducing the major commodities (corn, wheat, soy) to the point that farmers cant even recover their production costs because the market is over-saturated. When countries like the US subsidize their crops, they undercut the markets of developing countries, causing poverty & hunger in third world countries.
b) One of the most ironic things about biotechnology industry claiming that it’s going to feed the world is that it has created a technology called the “terminator gene”: a suicide gene that is put into crops so that after one planting cycle, it will “commit suicide”. The seed is sterile. You can not re-plant the seed. So after one crop cycle, the plant is done and you must BUY more seeds. (There are 15 patents by 1st world countries on terminator genes.) Can you imagine what is going to happen if this terminator gene spreads to crops around the world?
Food Prices Rising, Third World Most Affected
What is considerable is the fact that this food crisis has nothing to do with the amount of food available. There is such an abundance of food that in the U.S. it is estimated that 25 percent is thrown out before it is eaten.
(7) The problem is one of distribution of both food and money. It is also based on global trade policies that lock nations into dependent development. Instead of growing food for their own people, they must grow crops for export to richer countries, using the money to then import food.
This coming crisis is nothing new to the exploited nations of the world, to the peoples overwhelmingly residing in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, where base survival is an everyday concern. Over 1 billion people around the world face chronic hunger each year. This does not have to be. The world needs a revolutionary system that overturns the present one to bring a society that meets the needs of all people, not the profit of a few in exploiter countries. The struggle to bring that world about is literally for many people a matter of life and death.
1. “Global Food Prices Hit Record High, Says UN.” http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/e...h-says-UN.html
2. “The Coming Hunger: Record Food Prices Put World ‘in Danger’, Says UN
Perfect storm of climate and oil puts world into ‘danger territory’” by Sean O’Grady, Economics Editor. Independent UK. January 6, 2011. http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2011/01/06-2
5. “U.N. Data Notes Sharp Rise in World Food Prices.” New York Times.