Monday, June 6, 2011

Dog Food

Two items from yesterday's Times that need to be read together. First, under the headline "‘For the Dogs’ Has a Whole New Meaning":
Lisa Cornish is rattling off today’s menu:

Pan-seared duck with brown rice and blueberry compote.

Roasted turkey with butternut squash and russet potatoes.

Salmon with black-and-white quinoa.

Delish. Just keep in mind that all of this, right down to those banana and yogurt health bars, is dog food.

Second, a front-page article under the headline "Temperature Rising: A Warming Planet Struggles to Feed Itself":
The rapid growth in farm output that defined the late 20th century has slowed to the point that it is failing to keep up with the demand for food, driven by population increases and rising affluence in once-poor countries.

Consumption of the four staples that supply most human calories — wheat, rice, corn and soybeans — has outstripped production for much of the past decade, drawing once-large stockpiles down to worrisome levels. The imbalance between supply and demand has resulted in two huge spikes in international grain prices since 2007, with some grains more than doubling in cost.

Those price jumps, though felt only moderately in the West, have worsened hunger for tens of millions of poor people, destabilizing politics in scores of countries, from Mexico to Uzbekistan to Yemen. The Haitian government was ousted in 2008 amid food riots, and anger over high prices has played a role in the recent Arab uprisings.

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