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Food Crisis and Famine, Is It Possible?
 

A mother wories about food insecurity.

Search for terms like food crisis and you will find a list of articles such as "Are We Running Out of Food?". There is great concern for many of the natural resources we depend on and food is not the least of resources we need every day. Malnutrition alone, which comes from not having enough food, kills 10 children every minute according to the U.N. Do the math and you will find that means 5,256,000 or more children die every year because of a lack of adequate food. Now it seems matters are taking a turn for the worse as the UN is warning of much greater risk to the worlds food supply. In much of the world the food crisis has already arrived leading to rioting and violence.

Our personal survival depends on adequate food supplies. In the US and most developed countries around the world we are accustomed to going to the market and obtaining our food supplies in abundance with little effort. The question is, could this change and what can we do to insure adequate food supplies.

Could Abundant Food In Markets Disappear

Take a look at your local market, do you see more people than before? As the price of gasoline has sky rocketed many families are cutting corners and not eating out, many are also cutting corners and not eating as they once did. A survey of shelves at your local market will reveal that there still seems to be enough, but look more closely and you may see gaps appearing in the shelves and behind the rows of products, as well as much higher prices, this is happening in many parts of the world. Could this situation continue to worsen, I think we are all becoming concerned that it will and at what point we will be affected in even greater terms.

 

High food prices seem to be the first method of controlling the use of the the food supply, this is called the law of Supply and Demand. But the laws of supply and demand work OK if we are talking about toys or other gadgets that we all don't need anyway (even if we do want them). They work also if we were discussing for example a shortage of green peas or other individual items. We would just choose something else to eat. What makes the current world food crisis so concerning (and scary if not life threatening for much of the worlds population) is that all food prices are on the rise. Every where you look the price of necessary food is rising, the laws of supply and demand are at work, but they will not cause us to all stop eating. Prices will not plummet because consumers will stop eating because we can't. No, we must eat every day and the quality and variety of our food is important to our health and well being not mention our life.

Have you heard talk of truckers strikes? Your local grocery store would be stripped bare in a matter of days if not hours (in a panic)  if truckers were to cease bringing goods to the stores for just a few days. Walmart and other major store chains have been called the rolling warehouse, because items must be stocked every day. What happens if the truckers strike, or the cost of diesel fuel continues to sky rocket. Still worse, what if these markets or truckers can't survive an economic down turn or depression because of heavy debt. In the US we depend on the store chains to deliver the necessities of our very lives including food. When we examine the methods used to supply us the basic necessities of every day life ( a just in time delivery system, reserves are kept to a minimum or are non existent) we start to wonder if they could become or in fact is a house of cards. The truth is, I'm sure we all count on some sort of government aid to these community necessities but then these question arise,

  1. How long will it take?

  2. What will we have to do to qualify for the aid needed?

  3. Will all areas be served equally or more importantly, adequately?

  4. Where will we need to go to get the aid?

  5. How will we get there?

Crisis and Disaster Breed Food Shortages

We know that food is a necessity of life. Food is already clearly suffering a strain which is seen in soaring prices and the food rioting in many places around the world. If the food supply becomes disrupted for any reason such as a natural disaster or a truckers strike, would we have enough on hand? This question has been on the minds of many. Consider the example of hurricane Katrina which struck the gulf coast of the US in recent years. We saw images of looting but the people weren't carrying out just TV's many were seen running with there arms full of food. What happened the last time a disaster or even a snow storm threatened where you live? A trip to the local grocery store reveals that especially in the short term, food can disappear quickly. What happens if the electricity is off, the stores are closed. The current world situation causes us all to stop and ponder if our food supply could be disrupted and what we can do about it. Even in rural areas many of us do not have access to food. Farming is not what it once was, today most food is grown on large corporate farms with only one crop. What's more is national reserves are drying up or disappearing all together. Take a look at these recent headlines

Keeping Food Supplies

In a survival situation there are a couple of common food sources that many people buy and keep packed in a survival kit such as Emergency MRE (Meals Ready To Eat) or Other Emergency Food Supplies. These are inexpensive and good in a disaster kit. If you search the links to emergency food supplies you see that it is possible to purchase a years food supply but this isn't practical for many of us. What we all can do with a little planning is keep enough food for several days on hand. We can cycle the food supplies so that they are always fresh this will provide a buffer until new supplies are available in any emergency.

 

 

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