#52 — COVID-19, Our Evolving Food System and More


How are you doing? Week 1 of lockdown is finally behind us (yes, it feels like ages but it’s been just a week).

Full Disclaimer: Most of what you will read this week are related to Covid, so if you would like to skip to the non-Covid part — go here.

The enormous impact that a global pandemic like this has had on our food systems is staggering, to the say the least.

The loss of livelihoods, businesses (food and otherwise), and people who have been affected by the coronavirus are deeply saddening.

If you are at home, social distanced, remember it’s a privilege. Feel grateful for our homes, food, families, and technology that is helping us get through this.

Thanks to the 20+ people who joined us and The Goya Journal on our Virtual Chai-Time Meet-up to talkabout how the current situation is shaping our food culture.

Around many cities, volunteer groups are mushrooming to help the elderly, homeless, migrants, and daily wage laborers by organizing food and shelter. Communities are mobilizing themselves to come together and helping to build each other up.

Amidst all the gloom there are small pockets of positivity and things that make us smile. Hold on to them, they’ll help us get through this.

Stay Curious (and safe),
Anusha & Elizabeth

P.S. With the current dynamic situation, stories are rapidly evolving. Please re-check the date of publishing for relevancy before you share an article.

Photo by Avinash Kumar on Unsplash

What’s The Status At APMCs During The Lockdown

Bloomberg Quint

BloombergQuint spoke with traders and office-bearers at five Agricultural Produce Market Committees. Read about the situation at the bulk supply markets after announcing the nationwide lockdown.

Note: This story was published on March 27th.
The status and functioning of these markets might have changed.

Market Watch 👀

Source: thomaszacharias.com/

A Tribute to My Floyd

Thomas Zacharias

Chef Floyd Cardoz who succumbed to COVID-19 last week brought to the world and India this reimagined, appreciative, and exploratory way of looking at Indian food and cooking.
Chef Thomas Zacharias writes a heartwarming tribute to his mentor and friend.

Floyd Forever ❤

How we eat, shop, and make food has changed drastically while we’re amidst this global pandemic.
How exactly?

👩‍🌾Strict measures of social distancing may be crucial to curb the spread of Covid-19, but ignoring the farm sector and farmers would be a grave mistake.

🌾Stimulus is less than what it appears to be, Govt must do more for farmers, says Ajay Vir Jakhar.
Indian Express

📱Queries of farmers will be answered on WhatsApp by agricultural scientists amid Lockdown.
Krishi Jagran

🍎Traders in Kolkata and Patna are in a panic over the presence of dragon fruit and banned Fuji apples from China in markets even as mandis across India face fall in sales and exports.
The Print

🍗Will the lockdown create a supply shock that India simply can’t afford? Read about the challenges along the food supply chain
The Economic Times

🚜e-commerce firms are facing several challenges. In many cities, impromptu volunteer groups are trying to ensure those in need get what they require.

📦Online food delivery was pegged to grow by 9.5% between 2020 and 2024. However, the numbers may be revised as consumers remain cautious and refrain from ordering food online. Read more about the gig economy crisis.

@green_humour Among the worst victims of the abrupt lockdown to curb the spread of COVID in India has been the fishing industry. Numerous boats out at sea for days were taken completely unawares by the lockdown, and with all transport or storage facilities abruptly shut, are having to dump their catch right back into the sea. This isn’t just a waste of sea food, but a major blow to both the livelihoods of coastal communities and India’s coastal economy. The crisis calls for immediate intervention by authorities to ensure that no more of the catch goes waste, and better policy on the insurance of finances for fishermen in the long run.


Urlis, Chattis & Cast Iron: Why Traditional Cookware Deserves a Spot in Your Kitchen

India has a long and diverse heritage of traditional cookware. Amrita Amesur makes a case for their place in the modern kitchen, with notes on how to use them, where to buy them, and how to care for them.

The Art & Science of Kashmir’s Pink Tea

Salt and baking soda are key ingredients. Salt acts as an electrolyte to prevent dehydration at high altitudes, and baking soda is the catalyst that turns it pink.

The Economics of a Plate of Food in India

Thalinomics,” the 11th chapter in the Economic Survey 2020, has quantified what a commoner pays for a plate of food in India and therefore relates economics to their everyday lives.

Water Politics: Climate Change and Its Impact on Caste

Access to water in the country has, for a very long time, been negotiated by a complex entwining of caste and gender identities that work to perpetuate structural inequalities. As severe drought threatens the country, Vaishnavi Behl examines how poor infrastructure and caste-based discrimination are compounding the problem.

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