Saturday, July 29, 2006

Vegetable Crisis?

Today I was reading an article in THE TIMES whilst waiting for my other half to choose some new spectacles (he never did get any, by the way...too fussy!). The article stated that because of the long, drawn-out hot weather we are having, this is now starting to have a big impact on the vegetable crops being grown across Europe. There's a large probability that prices will rise because crop yields may be down by as much as 40% on some crops (e.g. potatoes, courgettes etc). Some crops are growing so quickly there is not enough time to harvest them, and then replant. So e.g. up to a third of a pea crop is being left as animal feed.

The Polish Parliament even took an early recess this week so politicians could go and pray for rain. But the flip side of this hot weather is that long, heavy downpours could soon follow. This in itself could water-log the crops currently growing....either making them un-harvestable, or causing a 'second flower'. For example, if this happens with the potato crop, a new potato will grow but the original potato will then become full of water, and inedible.

Frozen chips will most definitely rise in price and there will be a shortage of sprouts this Christmas, according to the article.

So, is this the start of a set of food crises that Europe, and indeed the World, may begin to face - this year, and in years to come (more severely?) And all as a result of Global Warming?

At an everyday level, the impact of this on the haves and havenots in society could be:

Well, I guess the haves will be able to afford higher-priced vegetables.
The havenots however, will not be able to afford fresh vegetables so easily - causing further detriment to the generally crap standard of diet of those from poor socio-economic backgrounds.

So let's all pray for/visualise drizzle, more regular temperatures, reversal of the climate crap we've all created, and Governments and businesses to truly wake up and take some positive action and hard decisions.

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