Rising global food prices as well as the dwindling food supply are believed to be partly the causes of the political upheavals that are happening and toppling autocratic and corrupt regimes in the Middle East and some Arab countries.
What causes rising global food prices and the dwindling food supply in turn are blamed by experts on climate change or global warming where agriculture is severely affected.
Much of the food scarcity anxiety, however, points to overpopulation as another main culprit when discussing food security problem.
While food stress may be prevalent in populous countries, the degree of gravity is much, much worst in third world countries like the Philippines.
We will always be at the mercy of, not only the affluent countries, but more so of the populous, but developing nations, like China, India, Brazil, etc., whose concern is to keep up with their improving economy and the well-being of their people.
The populous, developing nations have now the capability to keep their economy growing, even as they convert agricultural lands to industrial plants or commercial businesses. With their ample resources, they can now import grains and other basic commodities while at the same time grow their own crops to ensure that their citizens won’t go hungry.
These countries could, in fact, go into long-term leases of land in other countries in order to secure food supplies. This is just one reality of food politics today.
Alas, the Philippines could never sustain this kind of arrangement, if it wanted to, for a long time because, surely, the developed and developing countries will outbid us.
This is when the food scarcity anxiety worsens. There are just too many mouths to feed. In the process, the poor gets to eat only once a day, if ever, and most kids never gets to be grown ups.
While there is an urgent need to stabilize climate change, there is a more compelling need to stabilize population in this country so that poverty can be arrested.
The key to accelerating the shift to smaller families especially among the poor in our society will mitigate government’s food supply apprehensions.
This is where the importance of giving women everywhere access to reproductive health care and family planning services comes into play.
Adequately eating three square meals a day, being healthy, and being educated can go a long way in helping build a better nation that won’t have to worry about food supply.