Not all food system issues are created equal. But most food system problems aren’t created new, either.
Pay close attention to the climate change stories (Ducks vs Maize) or the saga of the ageing farmers (India vs Japan). There’s so much we can learn from countries who have tried and implemented climate change measures or tried and failed at things.
Innovation might be deep-rooted in history, but it’s also about not reinventing the future, but simply looking out for it.
As William Gibson famously put it, the future is already here, it’s not evenly distributed.
While the Indian Government is busy chasing the wild, dive into this week’s issue.
Anusha and Elizabeth
To Survive in a Wetter World, Raise Ducks, Not Chickens
Farmers in Bangladesh are adapting to climate change by growing ducks, without having to be displaced. But restaurants are also adapting to innovatively selling the duck dishes.
Maize Loses Sheen for Bihar’s Farmers
Maize as a water-resilient crop also needs a lucrative business model for it to be viable to the farmers. As farmers continue to produce great yields, low prices still haunt them.
Swiggy, Zomato and other delivery companies are impacting the rest of the supply chain pushing it to be more transparent, efficient, and demand-driven, notes Hemendra Mathur in this article.
☭Putting the SP in SPNF
The founder of Subash Palekar Natural Farming (previously Zero Budget Natural Farming) talks about the method and also his views on organic farming.
The Fasal challenge: Getting big data to small farmers
Traditional farming methods can’t cope with rapidly changing weather patterns. How do small farmers afford an expensive platform like Fasal, which is out of their reach?
Fonterra wants to do what Danone couldn’t in the Indian yoghurt market. By outsourcing other things and focus on what matters the most to them — innovation, Fonterra might actually have this.
GM crops and risks
FSSAI chairman Dr. S R Rao talks about the debate on genetically modified crops and Indian systems in place for detecting “risks”.
In 2016, the average age of an Indian farmer was 50.1 years old. With farming, not a lucrative career option anymore, what happens to the rest of Indian feeding?
This trend, sadly, is universal. The average age of a farmer in the US is 58 years, while that of a Japanese farmer is 67 years. Every third European farmer is more than 65 years old. However, the Japanese government has major plans in place to encourage people below 45 to take up farming. How will India take this up?
Culture and Waste
India’s first garbage cafe: Go in with plastic waste and dine for free at India’s first Garbage cafe in Chattisgarh, an initiative to collect plastic waste and lay roads while also feeding the needy.
Archana speaks about the gendered trap of being a food writer as she discussed some of the women food writers whose writing counts more as history than as recipes.
▶︎ These Madurai kitchenware shops are experiencing a boom in sales, thanks to social media.
▶︎ This Karur cooperative wants to make Moringa more than just about Sambar.
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