Is there a way out ?
For confused urban consumer & troubled rural small farmers !!!
Shifting Consumption … Impacts on the Earth and our Farmers
Twenty-first Century is witnessing remarkable changes in food consumption pattern of fast growing urban middle class as influenced by rapidly expanding market around it. While choices are overwhelming and food-expenses increasing, a clear shift towards consumption of outside food, with high food-miles is becoming the order, while local and cultural foods fast disappearing from our plates. This shift has a ecological foot print in terms of global-warming, biodiversity erosion; an economic implication commercialization of agriculture and marginalization of small farmers and socio-cultural implications on our food-habits and food-producers. Impacts of food-globalization on local farmers are evident with traditional local crops and varieties paving way to mono-cropping of cash crops.
Urban Middle Class at Cross Roads…
Urban middle class is blessed with increasing disposable income while also stressed for time. Itâ€™s craving for reconnecting to roots is evidenced in mushrooming whatsapp and facebook groups and nostalgia food corners. It is also searching avenues to fulfill its ecological and social responsibilities, while meeting demands for good health.
Potential of Local and Cultural Consumption
Local resource management and stewardship have been acknowledged as models of sustainability, but hardly rewarded in the marketplace. Cultural consumption is in our genes and our food dominating culture celebrations, are local foods. We have grown with and fondly recall the geographical connection to the grains and pulses we eat and the spices we savour. We celebrate the diversity in each food crop, with some geographic origins always apprealing our taste buds. While, they may or may not be purely organic, they remain naturally grown by our small-farmer friends, positively contributing to local and global sustainability and equity.