[Homestead] He who controls food controls . . . .
genegerue at ruralize.com
Tue Dec 9 13:34:21 EST 2008
On Dec 9, 2008, at 10:43 AM, Clansgian at wmconnect.com wrote:
>>> 2) He who has the gold makes the rules. 'Just substitute " the
>> guns," or "the most nuclear weapons" for "gold"
> Very incorrect. He who has the food. Or better still, he who can
> the food.
The food production system is controlled by a relatively small number
of monster agribusiness companies. From patented seeds to consumers'
tables, perhaps ten companies are largely in charge of worldwide food
production and distribution. The following is just one source of this
type of information. From:
The profit system
The answer can be stated in one sentence. The global food industry is
not organized to feed the hungry; it is organized to generate profits
for corporate agribusiness.
The agribusiness giants are achieving that objective very well indeed.
This year, agribusiness profits are soaring above last year's levels,
while hungry people from Haiti to Egypt to Senegal were taking to the
streets to protest rising food prices. These figures are for just
three months at the beginning of 2008.
Archer Daniels Midland (ADM). Gross profit: $1.15 billion, up 55% from
Cargill: Net earnings: $1.03 billion, up 86%
Bunge. Consolidated gross profit: $867 million, up 189%.
Seeds & herbicides
Monsanto. Gross profit: $2.23 billion, up 54%.
Dupont Agriculture and Nutrition. Pre-tax operating income: $786
million, up 21%
Potash Corporation. Net income: $66 million, up 185.9%
Mosaic. Net earnings: $520.8 million, up more than 1,200%
The companies listed above, plus a few more, are the monopoly or near-
monopoly buyers and sellers of agricultural products around the world.
Six companies control 85% of the world trade in grain; three control
83% of cocoa; three control 80% of the banana trade. ADM, Cargill
and Bunge effectively control the world's corn, which means that they
alone decide how much of each year's crop goes to make ethanol,
sweeteners, animal feed or human food.
As the editors of Hungry for Profit write, "The enormous power exerted
by the largest agribusiness/food corporations allows them essentially
to control the cost of their raw materials purchased from farmers
while at the same time keeping prices of food to the general public at
high enough levels to ensure large profits."
Over the past three decades, transnational agribusiness companies have
engineered a massive restructuring of global agriculture. Directly
through their own market power and indirectly through governments and
the World Bank, IMF and World Trade Organization, they have changed
the way food is grown and distributed around the world. The changes
have had wonderful effects on their profits, while simultaneously
making global hunger worse and food crises inevitable.
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