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North American Food Supply Issues


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There's a crazy paradox in regards to how we get our food nowadays. 

The Food source is fine, people are raising livestock, growing crops, milking cows. But because a large percentage of their customer base (restaurants and catering) have been told to stay home, they can't get their food to market like they have been. 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/09/us-coronavirus-outbreak-agriculture-food-supply-waste

We see in Belgium that people are being told to eat more fries because growers can't get their food to market. 

https://globalnews.ca/news/6877112/coronavirus-potatoes-fries-belgians/

On the flip side, we have large swaths of the population out of work and thrust into an area of food insecurity. 

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/04/11/food-a11.html

Then there's the fact that Food processing facilities have been hit by COVID-19 and many of the workers there are getting sick. 

I just heard today that McDonalds in Canada will stop selling Canadian Beef because the supply chain has slowed. In the US, Tyson's food i begging workers to show up to work. 

And now Trump is ordering processing plants to stay open. 

https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/29/business/meat-processing-plant-workers-reaction-executive-order/index.html

Make you want to buy organic, doesn't it? 

How do we get this food to market?

How can people be euthanizing animals, flushing milk down the drain and plowing over drops but people are also starving and waiting hours in line for handouts? 

This video from a few years ago on John Oliver, he mentions how it's more economical for Growers and Grocery stores to throw food away than to donate it. 

 

I'm not here to suggest any answers. Other than obviously allowing growers to diversify how they get their food to market. I know these large food companies are very controlling of how growers distribute their food. With Chicken Farming, the large companies own the Chickens and the Feed. The farmers just grow the birds for them. 

 It's a really interesting debate. I live in a very food plentiful area of the world (four or five large grocery stores within walking distance of me), I've not seen many of the shortages as bad as I've heard. But it's a consequence of this disease that's pretty stark. 

Edited by Boges
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1 hour ago, New World Disorder said:

While you are at it, invest in some of that long term food storage stuff. I am also contemplating trying to grow some things in the small yard I got.

Na. I figure if it lasts much longer than 2 months, wouldn't want to be around anymore anyway.

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3 hours ago, Boges said:

I'm not here to suggest any answers. Other than obviously allowing growers to diversify how they get their food to market. I know these large food companies are very controlling of how growers distribute their food. With Chicken Farming, the large companies own the Chickens and the Feed. The farmers just grow the birds for them.

 

And that is by design, because the economics of such scale and supply distribution were developed to satisfy demand that came from consumers, restaurants, schools, and other institutions.   Diversification and growing locally cannot produce enough food without major changes, higher costs, and shortages.

The main concern is COVID19 impact on labour for today's processing and planting/harvesting in many areas.

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Not being able to keep food in the stores is the first step to a destruction in civilization. 

That's why I never got the panic buying. If it every comes to a point where Toilet Paper isn't being made, you'll have bigger problems then buying toilet paper. 

I don't suspect we'll starve in North America, I just find it interesting/perplexing that we can't get this food to market. It's being made and because it can't get processed or it can't go to its intended source at a restaurant, it's more economical to throw it away. 

That's crazy!

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6 minutes ago, Boges said:

I don't suspect we'll starve in North America, I just find it interesting/perplexing that we can't get this food to market. It's being made and because it can't get processed or it can't go to its intended source at a restaurant, it's more economical to throw it away. 

That's crazy!

 

Not so crazy....futures contracts and deliveries apply to pork bellies just as much as they apply to crude oil.

There is no economical way to keep feeder hogs or process them if the supply chains are broken down.   Dairy cows still require feed and milking even if the milk is dumped down the sewer drain.  

 

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17 minutes ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

Not so crazy....futures contracts and deliveries apply to pork bellies just as much as they apply to crude oil.

There is no economical way to keep feeder hogs or process them if the supply chains are broken down.   Dairy cows still require feed and milking even if the milk is dumped down the sewer drain.  

Unlike with Oil demand is still there. Millions of people aren't working right now. 

I've saw on TV that it's a packaging issue. These suppliers are used to selling things in bulk and not to grocery stores. People don't want to buy 50 lbs of flour, they need to buy 10 lbs of flour. They don't need an entire sub-primal they needs a 3 lb roast. 

That's the adjustment that needs to be made. 

I understand why it's cheaper to throw food away than to package, distribute and then donate it. But as society we need to find a way to facilitate that somehow. 

Edited by Boges
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5 minutes ago, Boges said:

That's the adjustment that needs to be made. 

I understand why it's cheaper to throw food away than to package, distribute and then donate it. But as society we need to find a way to facilitate that somehow. 

 

That would help, but demand for food is still way down because consumers are not picking up all the supply slack.    Canada doesn't have federal school food programs like those in the U.S., which is a huge impact on the market supply.

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Just now, bush_cheney2004 said:

That would help, but demand for food is still way down because consumers are not picking up all the supply slack.    Canada doesn't have federal school food programs like those in the U.S., which is a huge impact on the market supply.

And yet shelves are empty and people are lining up at Food banks. 

There's a disconnect here. 

 

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1 minute ago, Boges said:

And yet shelves are empty and people are lining up at Food banks. 

There's a disconnect here. 

 

 

Some food banks are getting donations from the suppliers, but they are not all staffed or configured to store and distribute it all (space limits, labour shortages, etc.).    Even in the best of times,  it is estimated that 30% of food is wasted in North America.

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I criticized Andrew Scheer for his supply management position, and the subsidies that the dairy industry receives to compete globally.  But I think many of us owe him a bit of an apology.  This pandemic has illustrated the need, the national security need for food and medicine (medical equipment included) to be produced in Canada.  Food supply should probably be looked at a little differently now.  Same with medicine.

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5 hours ago, Boges said:

Not being able to keep food in the stores is the first step to a destruction in civilization. 

That's why I never got the panic buying. If it every comes to a point where Toilet Paper isn't being made, you'll have bigger problems then buying toilet paper. 

I don't suspect we'll starve in North America, I just find it interesting/perplexing that we can't get this food to market. It's being made and because it can't get processed or it can't go to its intended source at a restaurant, it's more economical to throw it away. 

That's crazy!

Yes it's getting curiouser and curiouser. I heard in some cases the meat packers didn't want to come back to work, they'd rather stay home and collect the pokey money which is actually not at all that bad, and get to be with the wife and kids.

Next up... people draged out of their homes and ordered to work at the slaughterhouses by hooded gunmen, the new squad of government security chivatos.

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6 hours ago, OftenWrong said:

Na. I figure if it lasts much longer than 2 months, wouldn't want to be around anymore anyway.

You'll just curl up into the fetal position and give up? Oh well one less mouth to feed I guess.  

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2 hours ago, Shady said:

I criticized Andrew Scheer for his supply management position, and the subsidies that the dairy industry receives to compete globally.  But I think many of us owe him a bit of an apology.  This pandemic has illustrated the need, the national security need for food and medicine (medical equipment included) to be produced in Canada.  Food supply should probably be looked at a little differently now.  Same with medicine.

Comrade :lol:

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2 minutes ago, eyeball said:

You'll just curl up into the fetal position and give up? Oh well one less mouth to feed I guess.  

I meant if we ever enter into mad-max zone. I'll leave that to you and Mel Gibson to sort it out.

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2 hours ago, Shady said:

I criticized Andrew Scheer for his supply management position, and the subsidies that the dairy industry receives to compete globally.  But I think many of us owe him a bit of an apology.  This pandemic has illustrated the need, the national security need for food and medicine (medical equipment included) to be produced in Canada.  Food supply should probably be looked at a little differently now.  Same with medicine.

Absolutely. Nations need to be more self reliant, this globalism experiment has failed.

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49 minutes ago, OftenWrong said:

Yes it's getting curiouser and curiouser. I heard in some cases the meat packers didn't want to come back to work, they'd rather stay home and collect the pokey money which is actually not at all that bad, and get to be with the wife and kids.

I'm betting they're thinking more about infection rates working elbow to elbow on the line and the fact that a place where animals are slaughtered is where this disease seems to have gotten started.  Is it just me or has that similarity and the coincidence of significant outbreaks occurring at slaughterhouses escaped notice?

I'm all for significant wage increases, bonuses and a tax-holiday to better motivate and reward front-line workers.  

Edited by eyeball
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6 minutes ago, OftenWrong said:

I meant if we ever enter into mad-max zone. I'll leave that to you and Mel Gibson to sort it out.

The likeliest reason for that would be if the world goes laissez faire and takes the stupid path to herd immunity.

Oh well I'll have my little boat, my fishin' pole, my crab trap, the garden's coming along and there'll more berries than I know what to do with growing out back soon. I'll be eating at least as well as Mel I think.

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50 minutes ago, eyeball said:

I'm betting they're thinking more about infection rates working elbow to elbow on the line and the fact that a place where animals are slaughtered is where this disease seems to have gotten started.  Is it just me or has that similarity and the coincidence of significant outbreaks occurring at slaughterhouses escaped notice?

I'm all for significant wage increases, bonuses and a tax-holiday to better motivate and reward front-line workers.  

Thanks for the wage increase, but we cannot eat dollar bills. What if there is no food in grocery stores?

It probably wouldn't cover the cost of food for long anyway. Soon you'll see some interesting food prices. How about a loaf of bread for 500 bucks, or a box of cereal for a thousand. Not to even mention things like the price of oil and wine.
 

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19 minutes ago, OftenWrong said:

Thanks for the wage increase, but we cannot eat dollar bills. What if there is no food in grocery stores?

It probably wouldn't cover the cost of food for long anyway. Soon you'll see some interesting food prices. How about a loaf of bread for 500 bucks, or a box of cereal for a thousand. Not to even mention things like the price of oil and wine.
 

You could try getting a boat. Your dad taught you everything else you need to know.

Anyways weren't you busy mocking over-reacting just a little while ago? Now look at you.

 

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8 minutes ago, eyeball said:

You could try getting a boat. Your dad taught you everything else you need to know.

Anyways weren't you busy mocking over-reacting just a little while ago?

Everything I've said is consistent and has come true so far. I remember you were the idiot celebrating how wonderful the shutdown was going to be for everyone. You sick bastard.

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3 hours ago, OftenWrong said:

Everything I've said is consistent and has come true so far. I remember you were the idiot celebrating how wonderful the shutdown was going to be for everyone. You sick bastard.

I remember things differently - you going off the rails ever since my wisecrack about me enjoying free beer and popcorn and you getting back to work and you've been a little nastier than usual ever since - lets be honest here, you and I didn't exactly go together like peas and carrots before this so...

Excuse me for looking beyond this crisis towards the opportunities that will follow but I'm kind of an optimist despite all the ignorant hicks who can't wait to get back to the mess that left us so unprepared for it. Meanwhile everything I've said is pretty consistent too;

a. a socioeconomic camel with a back ready to break under the weight of a feather if not a global pandemic, check...

b. that we'd have no more ability to co-operate our way out of a wet paper bag to save our lives, check...

c. because we live in the most politicized hyper-partisan times in living memory, check...

d. and my perennial fave - because of how vulnerable humanity was to governments and politicians who put their own interests ahead of humanity's.

Perhaps a little vindication must come thru but I'm really not sorry if it offends you, in particular.  If you really need someone else you can blame for how the world peed on your pancakes then fine I'll be your sick bastard...you poor pathetic dweeb you never saw it coming did you? Talk about unprepared.

Edited by eyeball
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