23 February 2009

Bishop Alan’s Blog: Cows Come Home Shock Horror

Bishop Alan writes of a dairy farm in his diocese where the farmers have begun doing their own marketing, selling dairy products locally rather than to the big supermarket chains.
Bishop Alan’s Blog: Cows Come Home Shock Horror:
The grim fact is that UK supermarkets and banks have beggared thousands of English dairy farms into extinction over the past ten years. Like all world food prices ours are rising now, but fuel, energy and feed costs are soaring. There may be one or two corn barons in East Anglia, but, as with other media lost causes, beware stereotypes about farmers.

And of course the same thing has been happening in South Africa as well, for many years.

The ANC government, with its Thatcherist neoliberal policies, disolved most of the the agricultural control boards and did away with that particular bureaucratisation of agriculture, but I'm not sure that things are any better.

I remember 25 years or so ago visiting a farmer in the Babanango district. The EU bureaucratic regulations required that all all cattle slaughtered for sale in the UK must be done at a few central and controlled slaughter houses, which killed off the local butchers. The farmer could not eat meat from his own beef herd. Instead of taking a beast to the local butcher for slaughter, it had to be taken to the shambles at Cato Ridge, more than 250 km away, and the farmer would then have to drive to the nearest town (30 km away) to buy the meat from the supermarket.

3 comments:

The Scylding said...

There is the story of a farmers meeting near Magaliesburg where people were talking rot about rich farmers etc. Then an Indian farmer stood up and told the following: He took 6 tons of cabbage to the Johannesburg Fresh Produce Market. Now they sell it for you, and charge you fees for that. They also charge you holding fees, as well as disposal fees for the stuff they did not sell.

A couple of weeks later, he got his cheque in the mail: His profit from selling 6 tons of cabbage? R6. At the time, just under US$1. (About 4 years ago).

But in other, non-regulated farming ventures, things are no better. I myself got seriously damaged by a well known organic farming enterprise (and I'm not the only one), which contributed in me having to sell my farm, and find another job - and for that I had to immigrate.

Qwin said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Elaina

http://www.craigslistpostingtools.info

Qwin said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Elaina

http://www.craigslistpostingtools.info

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