The actual article itself is just the usual wishy washy drivel. We don\’t like those neoliberals so we shouldn\’t have neoliberalism in global food production.
The policies that the hunger summit endorsed will not eradicate hunger – and they might well make it worse. They are based on the same principle that guides all of the government\’s development thinking – namely the idea that \”the market knows best\”. That\’s why African farmers\’ movements rejected a major component of the hunger summit – the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition. This alliance was launched at the last G8 and promises to increase investment in agriculture through \”partnerships\” with food giants such as Monsanto, Syngenta, Cargill and Unilever.
It really is the usual stupidity. We know very well that 50% of the crops in these poor countries rot before they have a chance to be eaten. Deal with that and there just wouldn\’t be food shortages. And how is that dealt with? Well, companies like Cargill do in fact deal with it. It\’s the whole agricultural infrastructure of grain elevators, railroad cars (or trucks). Or warehouses and shipping ports. That\’s what the commodity giants do: and that\’s exactly the system that these countries need.
It\’s quite true that the commodity giants don\’t have to own these systems, don\’t have to be the people who build them. Governments can give it their usual cack-handed try if they prefer. But it is still true that this industrialised and efficient gathering, processing and shipping system is what is needed. All that\’s being argued about is whether it should be done by people who know what they\’re doing or not.
But a peek at the comments shows some seriously disturbed people:
@Nicopotamus – Mao\’s farming model DID work.
Historically, China has never been able to feed itself. The famine during the Great Leap Forward was due to 50% of all farmland being unusable due to floods and droughts. Rationing reduced the impact of the food shortage and gains during that period in irrigation (etc) ensured that there hasn\’t been another significant Chinese famine since.
Mao solved China\’s food shortages, he didn\’t cause them.
The Green Revolution was a disaster. That people in the West still laud it as some sort of miracle is a testament to western corporate propaganda.
Excess cereals could be fortified and sold cheaply, subsidized, to the parts of the world suffering from hunger. The very opposite of the free market.
Thereby putting every small scale farmer out of business in those countries.
Neoliberalism has put more people into poverty than at any time in human history.
That poverty has been reduced and is reducing would seem to argue against that idea.
What hope is there when the voters believe such things?