Isn't it ironic that we human beings take food growers for granted knowing very well that the most essential thing for our very own survival is food? Can you imagine a situation where all the food growers have gone on strike and refuse to till the soil to produce food? Scary thought, isn't it? We can't eat our cars, buildings or our money. Can we?
The Governments have sponsored Green Revolutions to achieve food security, which they achieved and in the process a few big corporations have gotten even bigger. But very little is done for the well being of the farmers or to increase their income. With rapid urbanization and rural migration the poor farmer is neglected and left to his/her fate. While it is the farmer who has to deal with all the uncertainties of nature it is the city dweller, whose life is secured. When city dwellers have no issues spending on manufactured goods that are priced high with huge markups making the manufacturers rich, why can't the same thing be applied to farm produce and help the farmer?
We need to do much more to fix our agrarian crisis. It is clear that farmers are caught in a double bind. On the one hand, costs of all inputs, particularly labour and water, are increasing and on the other hand, there are controls on food prices. Our food pricing policy is built on the premise that we are a poor country, so consumers must be protected. But this means farmers—who are also consumers of food—are not paid remunerative prices for their product. And all the big talk about deregulation and ease of doing business never makes it to their fields. They are restrained in where they can sell; prices are artificially “fixed”; and when shortages grow, government rushes to buy from heavily subsidized global farms. This cannot go on.
While it is understood that the inefficiencies in the supply chain and middlemen, who don't add any value, are cutting into the income of the farmers, it is still necessary to price the food appropriately so farmers have better income and a decent living. This issue needs to be addressed immediately and effectively to help a farmer sustain on his/her land and if this means allowing FDI in retail then I am all for it.
Also people need to realize the illusory nature of money. In all the thousands of pages that have been written about the finance industry in the years, little space has been devoted to one fundamental question, ‘Why is the industry so profitable?’ Or perhaps, the relevant question is, ‘Why does it appear so profitable?’
The common sense that suggests that the activity of exchanging bits of paper cannot make profits for everyone may be a clue that much of this profit is illusory: much of the finance sector growth represents not the creation of wealth but the sector’s appropriation of wealth created elsewhere in the economy, mostly for the benefit of some of the people working in the financial sector.
Bottom line people should be willing to pay more for healthy food produced by the toil of farmers.
17/9/2012 03:57:03 pm
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Nature loving environment enthusiast.
-- Venky Talla