How Secure is the Supply of Food?

The debate is chaotic and confusing when it comes to whether eating locally is truly a better option in all aspects of life. Local food can be expensive, and it can depend heavily on the ability of your region to cultivate crops. Eating locally is a topsy-turvy concept that is best implemented if people at least try to embrace some conditions of it. However, it is important that society knows the implications of the global food systems and how big box companies dominate the food industry. In one of my earlier posts, A Seat at the Table, I talked about the soy and corn byproducts that agricultural corporations depend on producing. These goods are popular products because they fill the void for cheaper alternatives to a higher priced option.

Whether your food supply is local or global, a major issue is on the horizon: food security. As the population grows, urbanization occurs, and consumption patterns change, the demand for food is increasing. Despite the size of these big corporations, they are still unable to keep up with the growth of society. Will society be able to adopt a sustainable food movement to support a growing society? While food prices are at their lowest and food is readily available, we still do not have a well-functioning global food system.

“One in seven people today still do not have access to sufficient food, and an equal number are over-fed.”

If people do not begin to recognize how the globalization and industrialization of food affects the world we live in, societies will not be able to adequately operate. At the rate that the world is growing, by the year 2050, the population will likely be around 9 billion. Yet the thing is, as population go up and food consumption follows, supply decreases. This inequality raises many concerns. If people continue to support the big box companies that make up the global food system, they are contributing to the severe implications to our world, and food supply will continue to dwindle. These consequences may only increase in severity as population grows but people should take steps to, at least somewhat, consume and live locally. Obviously, the global food industry will never just disappear. As a result, the choice falls on the individual.

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2 Comments

  1. You raise a really great point that food security and eating locally are more intertwined than is usually recognized. By eating locally and supporting local farmers and agricultural systems, we make our source more secure. There is potential for massive food shortages with the current systems of very large scale agriculture where if one farmer looses a crop, thousands who really on one source will suffer the consequences. Eating local, on the other hand, encourages small-scale agriculture which allows for people to have backups if their source has a bad year. While people often focus on the benefits of eating local for environmental reasons and to help to the local economy, food security is another place the locavore movement has potential but is not often acknowledged. Thanks for the post!

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