GOOD FOOD FOR EVERYONE FOREVER
A people's takeover of the world's food supply
By Colin Tudge
Published by Pari Publishing Sas.
Via Tozzi, 7 58045 Pari (GR) Italy
174 pages Paperback No illustrations
Colin Tudge believes that today the powers that be (a phrase he has borrowed from St. Paul) are banks corporates and governments. By 2050 there may 9 billion people on the Earth along with 5 - 8 billion other species. In the view of many such numbers cannot be fed by the Earth and food and water wars may be seen as a very real possibility. "If we don't solve the world's food problems, and soon, we'll have had our chips."
Colin Tudge discusses modern trends in agriculture and contrasts them with the visions of eighteenth century philosophers such as David Hume, Adam Smith and the founders of the United States. Today governments are extensions of corporations who are driven by the urge for growth but ignoring real needs. Agricultural research is now the preserve of corporates whose aim is profit achieved by increasing turnover, adding value and keeping costs to a minimum. Increased GDP will enable wealth to trickle down to all. The experience of recent years has been otherwise.
Half of the wheat now grown in the world is used to feed livestock, 80 per cent of the maize and 90 per cent of the soya. Cattle need to eat about 10 grams of plant protein for every gram of plant protein that they produce.
However, all is not doom and gloom. This writer believes that such numbers are supportable but only if there is a major agrarian renaissance accompanied by a radical rethink about our way of life. As he has written before, this author says that if humans take their required quota of protein from cereals without first turning it into meat, many more people may be fed. The ideal diet would include plenty of plants, not much meat and maximum variety (as was enjoyed by our hunter gatherer forebears).
The plan that Colin Tudge outlines offers some hope for the future. His "Campaign for Real Farming" may in the coming years be seen as a sensible way forward. That website is worth a visit.