Saturday, 8 January 2011

Food prices on the rise

December saw world food prices increase. The cost of food is now higher than it was in 2008, when price rises sparked riots in some countries.

A loaf of bread in my home town of Penygraig in the Rhondda has gone up 10% from 90p to 99p.

Meanwhile, demand for Foodbanks: the modern day equivalent of the soup kitechen, continues to grow.

We continue to waste staggering amounts of food.

It doesn't have to be this way. In Fife, Scotland, 'One Planet Fife' are working to ensure Fife's communities are resilient to food price increases. A co-ordinated plan helps community food groups co-operate with producers to source local and low input food, organising local deliveries, as well as community growing projects. Public bodies work together to agree 'sustainable food procurement' policies, enabling groups of local farmers to develop the capacity to supply what's needed, creating new jobs and reducing transport and packaging. Communities and businesses work together to reduce avoidable food waste and to use unavoidable food waste to generate energy and fertiliser. Agricultural advisors help farmers and growers to reduce the environmental impact of their businesses through changes in land management, better use of the fertiliser and renewable energy production. At national and international level, developing a food sovereignty approach which gives people and communities more control over local and regional food production and distribution and leads to a fairer and more sustainable global food system.

There's no reason why we can't do the same here in Wales.

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