The Cost of Industrial Choice

The figures in this post about industrial food production vs. small-scale local production it felt complementary to our discussion about the cost of choice:
(the original text includes links to research resources for the data).

„Consumers pay $7.5 trillion each year for industrially produced food. But between a third and half of this production is wasted along the way to the consumer or at the table: spoiled in the field or in transport, rejected from grocers because of blemishes, or left on the plate because of over-serving.

Conversely, households in OECD countries consume about a quarter more food than is needed – leading to obesity and related health problems.

The total food overproduced each year is worth $3.8 trillion – a combination of $2.49 trillion worth of food waste and $1.26 trillion of over-consumption …

When the wider environmental damages – including contaminated soils and water, greenhouse gas emissions – are added to the health and social impacts, the harm done by the industrial food chain is almost $5 trillion (see footnote 193). For every dollar consumers spent in supermarkets, health and environmental damages cost two dollars more.

… over the last century, the industrial food chain has not introduced a single new crop or livestock species to production but has cut the genetic diversity of our crops by 75 per cent, reduced the number of species by about one third, and reduced the nutritional value of our crops by up to 40 per cent.

The industrial food chain works with only 137 crop species and five main livestock species … By contrast, the peasant web is breeding and growing 7,000 different crop species and 34 livestock species”

Dear Romanians, your country is a special place because of its established and still living peasantry tradition. Keep it alive. At every opportunity you have give preference to local food over 28industrial food.

By Original: lyzadanger Derivative work:
Diliff, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link


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