[permaculture] The Food Crunch

Harmon Seaver hseaver at gmail.com
Thu Apr 24 08:29:23 EDT 2008

Marimike6 at cs.com wrote:
> Here's a good article from Asia Times explaining one aspect of the current 
> food crunch:
> "The FAO warns that the explosive growth in acreage used to grow fuels and 
> not food in the past three years is dramatically changing the outlook for food 
> supply globally, and forcing food prices sharply higher for all foods from 
> cereals to sugar to meat and dairy products. The use of cereals, sugar, oilseeds 
> and vegetable oils to satisfy the needs of a rapidly increasing bio-fuel 
> industry, is one of the main drivers, most especially the large volumes of maize in 
> the US, wheat and rapeseed in the EU and sugar in Brazil for ethanol and 
> bio-diesel production. 

    Don't you just have to wonder who is behind this massive barrage of
dis-information about biofuels causing food prices to go up and food
shortages? Once again, NO FOOD IS LOST in the production of ethanol,
there not only is just as much food left over after the sugars and
starches are extracted in the form of alcohol, but it is much more
nutritious food, healthier for livestock to eat, they average 17% higher
weight gain and and gain it faster and don't get sick like they do with
eating too much grain.
    Since we know that the vast majority of grain goes to feed
livestock, not people, these the production of ethanol is a much better
use for grain. Food prices are going up because of the incredibly rapid
increase in the cost of fossil fuel based fertilizers, herbicides, and
pesticides, not to mention tractor and transportation fuel, and food
prices would continue to go up just as fast if all ethanol production
were ended today.
    No, actually, if all ethanol production were ended today, food
prices would go up even faster.

Harmon Seaver

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