Wednesday, 16 January 2013

So folk who read the Guardian want poor people to stay poor?


Or so it seems:

But in the case of quinoa, there's a ghastly irony when the Andean peasant's staple grain becomes too expensive at home because it has acquired hero product status among affluent foreigners preoccupied with personal health, animal welfare and reducing their carbon "foodprint". Viewed through a lens of food security, our current enthusiasm for quinoa looks increasingly misplaced.

There's the clue - "food security". You think that's all about people staying alive, about ensuring supply and such important stuff don't you? You're wring - food security is all about keeping peasants as peasants. Indeed, this is the problem with that Andean agriculture:

Averaging $3,115 (£1,930) per tonne in 2011, quinoa has tripled in price since 2006. Coloured varieties fetch even more. Red royal quinoa sells at about $4,500 a tonne and the black variety can reach $8,000 per tonne. The crop has become a lifeline for the people of Bolivia's Oruro and Potosi regions, among the poorest in what is one of South America's poorest nations.

Get this folks - rather than scraping a bare existence with subsistence agriculture those Andean peasants are making a decent living instead selling us rich folk trendy cereals. The tripling of the quinoa price is a huge boost to the Andean economy. It is a good thing - people in these places (assuming they can escape from their hideous socialist governments) have the chance to do something else with their time, to create new ideas, new businesses and new sources of wealth.

What these ridiculous, protectionists in the Guardian propose is that it's better for Andean peasants to scrat a subsistence living than for the economy of these places to thrive because we want to pay silly money for barely edible grain products. They would rather such folk starved to protect their precious misconception of peasant agriculture.

These ghastly lefties want poor people to stay poor. Probably so they can patronise them.


1 comment:

one night in bangkok said...

"These ghastly lefties want poor people to stay poor. Probably so they can patronise them."

Either that, or because it winds up Tories.