Monday, July 29, 2013

An initiative against food speculation

After my master studies, I was considered a bit as a looser, i was not going to a very prestigious university and was going to work on agriculture, while most of my friends studied fancy finances. Since then many things have changed. The financial crisis and climate crisis have resulted in higher and more volatile prices leading to more food insecurity, hunger and less food safety.

Today far from being a marginal topic, agriculture and its supply chains are getting more and more importance in our everyday life. Not only we see hunger has only reduced marginally despite of the millennium development report but also children die in China due to unsafe milk, lasagna has to be taken out of European market because the meat inside is not the one declared. Time has come to look in more detail into our food chain and try to understand what is happening, who has the power, why despite of our better knowledge and better technologies prices are still going up. Food speculation is one of the reasons. (See an older of my blog post on the topic here)

Food speculation has become a lucrative business, especially in these times where investing in other commodities, or real estate is difficult. But it is also the result of a food industry that is getting more and more centralized giving them more and more power. Time has come to put food and its chain into the political debate. The young socialists also share this opinion, and have started a popular initiative to for forbid food speculation in Switzerland. If you are Swiss, join me in signing this initiative, whether you agree with the initiative text or not, because it is time to start debating if food is a commodity or a right, and how we can take back to control over what we eat and how people work for our food. If you are not Swiss, keep an eye on a very interesting up-coming debate.

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