People are getting poorer, and cheap food is more necessary now than ever. However, shocks to the food supply chain have caused large amounts of food to either increase in price or go bad. In one major example of this, Politico reports that huge amounts of food are going to waste, from rotting in the fields to rotting in storage waiting to go to market.
Tens of millions of pounds of American-grown produce is rotting in fields as food banks across the country scramble to meet a massive surge in demand, a two-pronged disaster that has deprived farmers of billions of dollars in revenue while millions of newly jobless Americans struggle to feed their families.
While other federal agencies quickly adapted their programs to the coronavirus crisis, the Agriculture Department took more than a month to make its first significant move to buy up surplus fruits and vegetables — despite repeated entreaties.
“It’s frustrating,” said Nikki Fried, commissioner of agriculture in Florida. Fried, who is a Democrat, and much of the Florida congressional delegation asked Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue nearly a month ago to use his broad authority and funding to get more Florida farmers plugged into federal food purchasing and distribution programs as the food service market collapsed. “Unfortunately, USDA didn’t move until [last week].”
The Agriculture Department said it has moved expeditiously to respond to the crisis.
“USDA is committed to maximizing our services and flexibilities to ensure children and others who need food can get it during this coronavirus epidemic,” Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement to POLITICO. “This is a challenging time for many Americans, but it is reassuring to see President Trump and our fellow Americans stepping up to the challenges facing us to make sure kids and those facing hunger are fed.” (source)
It is highly unlikely that there is a natural food crisis in the US right now completely taking place.
While it is not true all of the time, many times, food crises are politically manufactured events.
Starvation is political to compel people to accept certain policies they normally would not endure. The biggest example of this last century was the Holodomor, which was the politically-manufactured starvation of Ukraine by the Soviet social engineers Gengrikh Yagoda and Lazar Kaganovich that resulted in the starvation of ten million Ukrainians and the ethnic cleansing of that country.
The US feeds the world for political reasons, and she still feeds Saudi Arabia. There is no reason she cannot feed her own people unless it is meant to cause political agitation.
This is what seems to be happening. Pork prices are not increasing because of a “pork shortage”, but because (a) pork contract prices are dropping and the drop in price means lower returns for investors, and more importantly, because pork (b) is a weapon we use against the Chinese since they rely on the US for food sustenance in the form of buying pork from American farmers.
It is true that farmers are having a hard time picking vegetables- something caused by the disruption to the patterns of necessary migrant workers who do the jobs that Americans do not or refuse to do and in so doing create value for themselves in their own nations while providing the US with cheap food. However, one cannot also eliminate the political element from this.
What is one looking at here? Is it acclimating the public to future food shortages? Will this just be a temporary disruption that will pass in a few years? Whatever happens, it is an excellent reminder to all people that the time to prepare was yesterday, that one should work as hard as one can today, and in making good decisions to be ready for the troubles that tomorrow may bring.