If you’ve not been caught up in the twitter storm, you should probably know about Bon Appetit’s recent controversy where a white chef told the world how to eat Pho. I think we’ll be hearing more about this in the future.
A very interesting session at the recent World Nutrition Congress in Cape Town discussed the role of the World Bank and IMF in shaping farmer livelihoods, and farm policy around the world. In this theme, this article about the school meal program in Brazil highlighted the role of Brazilian government in supporting farmers through their food buying program. In South Africa, we learn that chicken imports (often from Brazil) mean that local chicken producers are unable to compete. Ian Scoones writes of this challenge in Zimbabwe, where, due to cheap chicken imports, introducing chickens as a source of livelihood may have limited benefits without structural and household (see Raj Patel’s TED talk) changes:
Cheap frozen chicken from Brazil will not go away as long as free trade regimes and cheap oil allow transnational value chains that can often undercut even the most diligent producers in rural Ghana, Mozambique or Zimbabwe.
While we’re reading about chickens, there was this recent article about how chickens spread around the world.
A reader brought to our attention the massive tomato crop losses that Nigeria is weathering due to coddling moth. Production has dropped by 75 to 90%, based on anecdotal reports of reduced truck shipments of tomatoes to market. Scientists wonder whether use of waste (polluted) water might also have contributed totomato vulnerability.Both NPR and the NYTimes have taken up the story. One little insect can wreak havoc all across the food chain, affecting millions of food producers, processors, marketers, tomato workers, and consumers. The solution is Integrated Pest Management, though there’s also a pesticide that’s been developed to combat the pest
This week we also have two stories related to food and the Syrian refugee crisis. Syrian refugees have started a catering business that supplies a taste of Syria in Hamilton, Ontario:
“We believe so strongly in the women, which might be why someone initially orders from us,” Farrington says, “but it’s such quality food that we feel confident that if we can get people to try it, they’ll be hooked.”
If you don’t live in Hamilton, you can still try a Syrian recipe, available in this article from the NYTimes.
Finally, I learned so much from this article about Dalit food:
This is the food my parents ate and their parents ate, and I, too, sometimes eat. It is an acquired taste, especially one that has been acquired due to centuries of discrimination.
Thank you for reading with us, and be sure to tell us what you are reading and writing!