I’m very excited because I’m going to the launch party for the Real Food Festival this evening which promises a good deal of sampling of free food and drink plus I can learn how to skin a rabbit (okay I probably won’t take the opportunity to actually try it myself) and apparently there is ‘sheep entertainment’, a concept which is highly exciting – although I would prefer pig entertainment as porkers are my favourite animals (sheep are slightly stupid).
Unfortunately I can’t get to the debate but I’m hoping that they will put it online or at least do something with the outcome because cheap food is costing the earth and there’s a lot of whingeing at the moment about the price of food going up. I’m not saying that people aren’t feeling the squeeze* but as a nation we are now spending less on food than 30 years ago, in fact just 10% of our disposable income which is also less than our neighbours in Europe (who spend on average 20%) – let alone the rest of the world.
I suspect ethical food is a very middle class preoccupation but it really distresses me that most consumers are so divorced from the reality of where their food comes from and have an expectation that they should eat meat every day and that they should be able to get apples (or tomatoes or asparagus or indeed anything else that is SEASONAL) 365 days a year and all for rock bottom prices.
I’ll stop before I really start ranting…
* I understand that a credit crunch is a specific economic phenomenon but I suspect the UK media are creating a self-fulfilling spiral of economic misery frightening people into feeling poorer than they actually are. Also – and I’m going to sound like a Tory here and I do apologise because I’m not – people taking responsibility for their own profligate spending/credit should not be bailed out by the government or the banks. Again financial responsibility (like social responsibility and where your food comes from) should be learnt as part of a holistic education from parents and in schools. Okay now where is that copy of Socialist Worker?