Sunday, March 20, 2011

The deeper meanings of sovereignty

"But there is more to food sovereignty than freedom from imports. In richer countries, food purchases make up a relatively small percent of household budgets. Here in the United States, we spend an average of only seven percent of our budgets on food, although that number rises in poor urban neighborhoods.

In Tunisia and Egypt, however, the average person spends more than a third of their household budget on food, and thus more people feel food price hikes daily in the pits of their stomachs.

As in most countries, Egyptians used to grow what they ate domestically. Today, Egypt is one of the world’s largest wheat importers bringing in over half the wheat it consumes from elsewhere. As a result, ordinary Egyptians are now extremely vulnerable to catastrophic global weather events and manipulative trading by speculators on commodity futures markets. Wheat prices are spiking in part because of recent droughts in China and flooding in Australia. The food markets in poorer nations feel the consequences of these price hikes immediately."


Anonymous said...

ya rafiq
where is the article from which you're quoting?


Rami Zurayk said...

Oops forgot to link. Will do it bukra