We will write a custom Essay on Animal Production and Food Availability specifically for you
301 certified writers online
The issue of consumption seems to have been gaining importance at an increasingly fast pace over the past few years. While solving a range of problems related to production, global economy has given spur to a number of other concerns, consumerism being the key one. In her essay “Wasting the Food We Have,” John Robins raises a very valid point concerning reasonable food consumption, or learning to “feed each other” (Robins 350), as a solution to the global issue such as hunger.
However, even though the suggested approach might seem alluring, it will only work once the principle of sustainable production and consumption is integrated into the framework of the global economy along with individuals making a choice of reducing consumption rates.
Food for Cattle and Food for People
On the one hand, the idea voiced by Robins seems quite legitimate – while the idea of using the existing resources responsibly appears to be obvious, in most cases, people seem to overlook it, adopting the strategy that leads to food scarcity rather quickly: “The world’s cattle alone, not to mention pigs and chickens, consume a quantity of food equal to the caloric needs of 8.7 billion people – nearly double the entire human population of the planet” (Robins 353).
Therefore, from the perspective that Robins gives on the current situation concerning famine and poverty, reducing the amount of meat consumed globally will create the premises for having a steep rise in the number of areas for growing crops.
In other words, refusing to consume meat and, therefore, reducing the amount of cattle to feed, one will have the area that can be used for growing food to support people from impoverished regions: “[…] one acre of land can grow 20,000 pounds of potatoes. The same acre of land, if used to grow cattlefeed, can produce less than 165 pounds of beef” (Robins 353).
Problems of the Suggested Solution
On the other hand, the solution provided by Robins may have tangibly negative economic consequences for the states, the key source of revenue for which concerns exporting cattle and various meat products to the partner states. Once the demand for meat drops, a range of entrepreneurships producing meat and mat products, or merely having something to do with the specified industry, are going to face a major crisis.
Many of these companies, which contribute to the increase of the state GDP and provide employment options for the local people, are likely to stop their operations. As a result, unemployment rates will increase significantly, therefore, contributing to the global poverty rate.
A Reasonable Approach
It would be wrong to assume that Robins’ argument is entirely false; quite on the contrary, he has a range of interesting ideas, such as the commentary on consumerism rates. However, adopting the approach that may trigger major economic problems does not seem to be adequate in the specified situation. Therefore, a compromise regarding global consumption rates and food options for impoverished regions must be made.
As inspiring as the approach suggested by Robins might seem, it still relies on the significance of an individual’s choice extensively without taking some of the obvious problems that may occur on a global level into account.
While the idea of reducing consumption rates does seem reasonable, as it will help bring down the rates of resources waste, it is still likely to trigger rather questionable effects in the domain of global economy. Therefore, though being an interesting suggestion, the approach suggested by Robins does not seem to meet the economic requirements for keeping states and their denizens at an appropriate level of economic wellbeing.
Robins, John. “Wasting the Food We Have.”A Diet for a New America. Tiburon, CA: H J Kramer, 1987. 350–354. Print.