Thursday, December 6, 2007

The other half

"The biggest barrier is the global marketplace, which helps to distort everything. Buying local is fine, but some say it disadvantages people in the developing world: those out-of-season green beans from Kenya and bundles of asparagus from Peru add up to vital foreign currency for poor countries and money in the pockets of impoverished people.

But that is only half the story. The other half is that decades of good intent and food aid have done nothing to change a system that is loaded against the poor. Those bundles of asparagus and packets of beans, grown by workers earning a dollar a day, are meagre exchange for allowing the likes of Coca Cola and Big Mac to bestride the world free of constraint in a global economy controlled by the Western-led World Bank."

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