“EATING IS A AN ECOLOGICAL ACT EATING IS AN ETHICAL ACT EATING IS A POLITICAL ACT” -VANDANA SHIVA
Summary of part 1
2)The Seed Fight (Monsanto’s)
3)Corporate Food Power /TTIP
1) The effect of the industrialization of our food and agriculture systems in the globalized free market we participate in: Effectively our connection to the food we eat, especially meat, has been cut.
It have been a very recent change in the global market (Emanating from America) whereby the mass supply of food had been snatched into the hand’s of a few TransNationals:
Six corporations – Monsanto, DuPont, Dow, Syngenta, Bayer and BASF – control 75% of the world pesticides market.
Only four corporations – ADM, Bunge, Cargill and Dreyfus – control more than 75% of the global grain trade. They overwhelmingly push commodity crops like corn and soy on local farmers at the expense of native crops.
Factory farms now account for 72 percent of poultry production, 43 percent of egg production, and 55 percent of pork production worldwide.
In 1980 it was ruled by the supreme court in America that you could patent and own the rights to organic life. Since that moment there has been a dramatic and fast rise in Genetically Modified Seed (Most of you have probably heard of Monsanto’s)
GMO seeds are mostly connected with pesticides (resistances) and the use of toxic herbicides has increased 15 times since GMOs were introduced.
Seeds are under attack everywhere. Laws are being pushed in many countries to limit farmers trading and even saving there own seeds. This was the basis of agriculture for the last 10,000 years. Now, seeds are privatized to the point where over a short period of 15 years the majority of farmers (in America) have been pushed to accept the imposed system of buying Monsantos seeds, herbicides, and fertilizers every season.
3) and Finally the last thing we talked about which links a lot of these American market references to Europe is the looming Corporate market take over with the Trans Atlantic Partnership. These Food multinationals (being some of the most powerful in the world) have helped to create this trade deal which is being called “a revolution against the law” & aims to reduce regulations and barriers on FOOD SAFETY LAWS, ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION.
Ex) In europe right now it is each individuals countries choice to allow GMO’s. In france for example it is banned at the moment.
TTIP would take this out of the countries power to do. Europe’s markets would be forced to take GMO products without “discriminatory” labels.
It would also slash the EU restrictions on pesticides, and growth hormones in Beef, which where banned in Europe because of there link with cancer.
TTIP has many rotten layers that I think is important to discuss and inform ourselves on, as its unfolding right now, but this can be home work for later, as I think we should stick to positive local food initiatives that we can get behind.
To conclude on the global, industrial food system:
We can look at the result of this rapid, recent change today; In the increasing destruction of soil (fertility and diversity), water and air pollution. Chemical weapons have been turned against the earth in the name of high yields, and while they have succeeded in producing more food. The variety of crops being grown globally has drastically shrunk. which is a huge cost on the planet and farming everywhere. Now.. In the spirit of Thinking Global, let turn our focus to acting local and hear from Annabel about the great directives going on here in Montpellier and the metropole area.
Conclusion of Presentation
Thank you very much Annabel for that information. The last time we talked about this topic we were left with a hunger for direct initiatives that we could create collectively (ex. a map of Montpellier simply outlining where people should go to pick up real food grown locally)
Now we can try to evolve these plans in line with the work that is already going on.
To conclude on this talk, I’d like to point out that the food supplied tonight is 100% local, however not organic as right now EnglishStuff’s economy is bellow 0$ meaning just used my personal small funds. One interesting thing I uncovered in my research this week is that from an ecological stand point, Organic farming is a necessary evolution, or Devolution as it was the common practice for the last 10,000 years before the “green” revolution 60 years ago of chemically destroying ‘pesky’ LIFE in the soil. However ecologically, buying local food, with a direct connection to the farmer, is even more important than organic foods which are grown in other parts of the world.
Because by outsourcing food, we completely lose touch with how much human energy it takes, to create a morsel of food. We are basically eating oil right now, essentially, and we are eating out of trucks, that is not going to work for much longer.
Who here has heard of peak oil?
To give you the scale that will completely shake up the illusion of our “business as usual” culture. In 2008, 8 years ago, when I was 14 years old, “humans” had already gone through 56% of all the oil that this earth has ever held. everything we do is based on oil, and our consumption is increasing everyday. The world supply of natural oil and gas peaked around 2010, which means the maximum rate of crude oil extraction was reached, after which the rate of extraction is expected to rapidly decline… forever. Today business sources estimate that we have 53.3 years of oil left in the worlds ‘tank’ which is apparently just fine as Oil giant are utilizing new technologies and extracting new energy sources like shale oil, however these soothing ‘business as usual’ claims are completely worthless when stacked beside climate science, which demonstrates that complete depletion of oil/coal/gas would raise the temperature of the planet to extinction levels for +90% of life on earth.
The Industrial food system and mechanized farm is founded on availability of cheap oil. Therefore it is impossible for the super markets to keep selling cheap food when the price of oil doubles or triples or sextuples (6) which the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook report projects: $200 per barrel in 2030, from the current $30 barrel (2016). Oil prices are almost impossible to accurately predict, but the rapid decline in supply is not.
Well this is all extremely important information to be aware of, what is even more important is approaching the situation with optimism. If we (meaning humanity) take the inherited pessimistic, doom and gloom approach to the future we are definitely fucked.
We are here today, talking together, learning about the development of food because we absolutely have the power to make a change in our behavior,
which has the power to question and change the behavior of those around us.
We should no longer pretend that we don’t have this power, once we realize that we a voting.. with each and every euro we spend.. on what food system we support.
Just ask yourself, before every bite you take:
Where is the food coming from? and
What future will it take me too?
And together, little by little, petite a petit, we will find the way.