Solutions for a farming future
7th June, 2000
Steven Gorelick lays out just a few of the policy changes, priority shifts and new approaches that could help save rural life, and lead to more sustainable farming
Firstly, and most obviously, rather than specialise their production for export, farmers should be encouraged to diversify their production for local and regional markets. More localised food production and marketing systems would be far more diverse than today’s homogenised global system, and would more closely reflect the geographical, climatic, and cultural diversity of the places where food is produced and consumed.
If a greater proportion of the food people eat were to be locally produced, ecological niches for food production would be matched by the economic niches farmers need to survive. A mix of local, regional, national, and international production would still be available – the goal would not be to put an end to the international trade in food, but to avoid transporting food thousands of miles when it could instead be produced next door.
Such a shift would help revitalise rural economies decimated by the global economy. Less money would be skimmed off the price of food by corporate middlemen, and far more would remain in the hands of farmers. This would especially be the case with the direct marketing of food via farmers’ markets and farm stands, box schemes...
To view the rest of this article - you must be a paying subscriber and Login
Using this website means you agree to us using simple cookies.