Food Fight

in #writing6 months ago

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Traffic was a standstill in Dublin yesterday as hundreds of farmers blocked the city streets with tractors in protest at, among other things, the price they’re getting for their beef.

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Judging from the numbers of Gardaí (police) present and the huge metal barriers they’d erected across some of the streets, closing them to both pedestrians and traffic, you’d swear it was terrorists and not farmers driving the tractors.

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Whatever happened to good old civil disobedience? In days of yore when we wanted to protest, that's exactly what we did. We didn't go asking permission from the very people we were protesting against, giving them the opportunity to batten down the hatches and pull up the drawbridge. We took the bastards by surprise and left them trailing in our wake scurrying to muster their troops.

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Dublin people aren’t too appreciative of culchies coming up to the big smoke and causing mayhem. I don't think they understand the concept of farming and think food comes from Lidl and Aldi. I must say, having read a bit about the protests, my sympathies lie with the farmers.

These are the people producing the food we eat and they’re expected to sell their produce to the processing plants at below cost. There are huge profits being made in this industry but all at the other end of the chain. The farmers are being screwed over by both the factories and the retailers.

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You have companies like Norbrook (the pharmaceutical company who produce animal health products) and Alltech (the feed ingredient company) as well as the meat processors like Larry Goodman who make it onto Ireland’s rich list, while back down on the farm they're depending upon handouts from Europe under the CAP scheme (common agricultural policy) forced to sell to the processing plants and retailers at less than the cost of production. The supermarkets may be plying you with cheap food, but you're paying for it in taxes to Europe to feed the 58 billion a year CAP fund.
How does that make any sense at all?

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Over 90% of meat processing is done by just three big companies, the largest owned by Larry Goodman, yet the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has said there is “no evidence of a cartel” and nothing to investigate. Could it be that Simon Coveney, the ex-minister for agriculture, is nephew-in-law of Beef Baron Larry Goodman? No conflict of interest there!

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Now the government has another stick with which to beat the farmers; carbon emissions! What do you do about emissions? Why you impose a tax, of course, to pay for the big machine we’re building to fix the climate.

You’d imagine that if the climate crisis was being driven by carbon dioxide that TPTB would be anxious to avoid the emissions produced by food being moved around the world. But no. The Irish government has recently signed a trade deal allowing the importation of beef from South America where the cost of production is lower and less regulated than Europe.

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Whether you believe the anthropogenic/carbon induced climate change hoax or understand that the sun is the principal driver of the climate cycle, you’ll agree that the changing climate means unfavourable growing conditions. This is a time when we should be concentrating on increasing food production, but according to the European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development Europe could be losing as many as 1000 farms a day. Young farmers are also deserting the land in droves, taking with them all the skills acquired over generations.

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So where’s all our food going to come from? The laboratory? Soylent Green anyone?

All images are my own

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This is great. The reportage, the photographs - this is what I call a great post.

Thank you very kindly. From the master of the scroll till your finger falls off post, with magical photos and text to match, I take that as some compliment indeed.

It's so sad to see this going on in Europe. Our small farmers in the U.S. have been systematically pushed out of business over the past few decades by large corporate-run farms.

At the same time pro-vegan documentaries like The Game Changer are gaining lots of press but are regularly debunked by critics. Chris Kresser believes moving the world to a vegan diet will cause more environmental harm.

Everything is so extreme these days and it's difficult for people to know what to believe. One thing is for sure food, in all forms, are going to get much more expensive in the near future.

The climate crisis has been a real boon for those pushing the vegan agenda, or the other way around, I'm not sure. What I do know is all of a sudden there's a whole lot of money behind it. Veganism everywhere.
While I'm not in favour of the way we farm animals, I have no wish to force my choices on others. I'm also suspect of what's behind it all, this drive to veganise us all and feed us lab-grown food substitutes...or am I channelling my inner Alex Jones?

I totally agree. My wife and I try to buy our meat from small local farms. I think, as consumers, the best thing we can do is vote with our dollars and support those local producers as best we can. Lab grown meat will definitely be the primary protein source on the shelves in the next decade. We're slowly being conditioned to accept it.

I read your post on the Dutch situation. You Dutchies sure know how to protest. Fair play to them knocking down the fences and motoring on through. Our guys could learn a few lessons from them.

The only way to make money from farming these days is to not actually farm the land. The prices farmers are earning are unsustainable and with rural Ireland being killed off to feed into Dublin another nail in the coffin.

There are very few jobs out west where farming used to be an option to provide for the family. Not anymore.

It's a crazy situation. People need food, farmers grow food. It should be that simple. Supply and demand, like any other business.
Of course, once government gets involved, mayhem ensues. If there is one law I would agree is needed it's the banning of below-cost selling. Selling food too cheaply lowers farm wages, destroys the land and does nothing for our respect for food or our healthy relationship with it.

Cows aren't our problem....I just made this meme the other day for another blog site after Bezo raised the ire of people in India, many who claim he will run them out of business....

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No, cows aren't our problem but if you can persuade the masses that cows are killing the planet, it's easier to get them to accept your Beyond Meat Impossible Foods.
BTW I hope you don't mind me mentioning it but the word better is much better with two Ts:)

Oooppps....thanks for pointing that out, I always appreciate spelling corrections, especially if I am going to be passing a meme around! lol.

Okay, ready for inspection again...fixed, I hope this time....lol.

Now that looks much better and you're very welcome. Finding fault with other people is one of my very favourite pastimes;)

my sympathies lie with the farmers totally.
whoever but not authorities.

ps

farmers = new terrorists.

this is so sad. this shit is everywhere today.

It is! We need to build a time machine and return to those halcyon days when everything made sense.

mmmm... a lot more sense it was then, yes.
halcyon? not sure of that.

"any time you take, actually, is the time of decline" (c) Victor Pelevin

What an uplifting quote;)

You captured great photos of the protest. Farmers here are also suffering. Farming is hard work and produces necessary products. I hope their protest does some good to help the situation.

Thanks. Yes so do I but I doubt it. The only solution I can see is to end below-cost selling and that's not going to happen as the big supermarkets depend upon it.

With fear as their ally, whilst being cheered on by the modern environmentalist .. the corporatocracy are poised to take over and industrialise every sphere of our society and food production is very big component within that takeover, control the food, control the people. Thank you for sharing.

I agree. Take away our means of feeding ourselves and crowd us all into cities where we're entirely dependant. Forty percent of the Irish population lives in Dublin, and more than 63% in total live in cities. Farmers are being encouraged to abandon food production and to plant spruce trees for carbon capture with generous grants from the government. The result is loss of rural jobs and services and the depopulation of the countryside.

Sorry it's late, @deirdyweirdy. Just sorting through potential new creator links, after a bit of an absence. Saw your excellent work. But, oh yes - they went there!

Farmers also came to town in the Netherlands and possibly Germany in late 2019. There will be further protests. The Social Conditioning Media (SCuM) will attempt to portray them as the bourgeois, further splintering Western society, just as the Bolsheviks created a new class out of thin air, designating Russian farmers who were prospering – god forbid! – as Kulaks, in the time of the Holodomors and world banker wars.

Source:
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Soylent

Howdy deirdyweirdy! As a former farmer this really pisses me off and it's largely the same here, the only one making good money have to be huge or a giant corporate farm operation.

The government better realize what they're doing is killing their own food production for the country.

Very interesting post but very sad and infuriating too!

I don't think the government cares much about the farmers. They'll just flood the market with cheap imported food and pass the carbon emissions problem onto someone else. Everything's just upside down and back to front.

It seems like if a politician ran who supported the farmers and local workers they'd win in a landside. The way it is they all need to be voted out!

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So much corruption everywhere you look.

And likely everywhere you don't look as well!

Best post I've read all day by far, The meat cartels are in America too but I won't get too into it for personal reasons. They are mafias and intermarry for power, same is here, same issues on a lot of meat but a lot of indy fam farms are doing quite well by being able to do their own thing with grass fed beef at a premium as many people have had it with the corruption that makes eating as expensive as paying for your house if not more.
Followed, full UV, wish my uv was more
are you on discord?

It seems it's the same everywhere, control of food production being concentrated in the hands of the few.
No, not on discord and thanks for the support.

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