Thursday, 27 August 2009

Wartime rations for Britain

The British people face wartime rations and a vegetarian diet in the event of a world food shortage, a new official assessment on the UK’s food security suggests today.

Even though the nation is 73 per cent self-sufficient in food production, higher than during the 1950s, the food chain is at risk from global influences such as a worldwide increase in population, climate change bringing extreme weather patterns, higher oil prices and more crops being grown for bio-fuel instead of food.

Supplies in future may also be disrupted by animal disease outbreaks, disruption of power supplies, trade disputes and interruptions for shipping and at ports.

The UK however has one of the highest cereal production capabilities in the world with seven tonnes grown per hectare, compared to a world average of 3.3 tonnes per hectare.

Mr Benn, the Environment Secretary, recently called for a radical rethink on the way the UK produces food. He also insisted that GM crops in future could help boost food production especially if some varieties were drought-resistant or required less water, fertilisers and pesticides.

Nowhere does the report mention people growing their own food, as happened during the last world war. Apparently this is not a solution! Margaret and I produce nearly all our own vegetables and only spend money on the accompanying meat and fish and some frills. This is a practical solution to a long-term problem, and we ensure that we are not consuming all of the chemicals used by farmers and supermarkets down the food chain. The motto and solution is "Eat healthy and grow your own, you know it makes sense."

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