Urgent Evoke

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I live in Slovakia. As part of the central Europe (yes, we were part of eastern block, but really, it is central Europe) the food security is not as big issue around here, as in other places. You dont see people suffering from hunger on a daily basis. So I think my country has the food supply pretty much covered, as far as quantity is concerned.

And that is where the real problem lies. We were strong agricultural country once and it has been part of culture, but nowadays it seems, we have diverted from this and are becoming more and more consumerish. We have plenty of food in the supermarkets and we buy it a lot too. But guess what, only a minority of this food comes from our own country. We are in no way near to be self-sufficient. Yet we have many fields and many of them in a perfect climate to grow food. But you dont see that many crop fields or vegetable fields in the summer. The majority of farmers grow cole-seed on there fields.

Now Im not saying, that growing cole-seed is entirely wrong. It only suggests the situation of our food industry. It is much more efficient for the farmers to grow plants for use in the oil processing industry (only minority of the cole-seed population is used to make cooking oil, the rest gets mixed with the regular engine oil and stuff like that) than to grow something edible.

Due to low support of the food industry by the government, we get dependant on the other countries, which might turn out badly if some kind of food crisis really hits us. Also the problem of local small farmers can be seen on the example of my grandmothers village. She grows a lot of vegetables in her garden and so does the rest of the village. They grow more than they can consume, even after they give their produce to their families (like our grandma does). So there are people, who are willing to buy their vegetables from them. So far so good. The problem is, that the prices on the produce are a tad smaller than they should be, I think, which drives the farmers to adapt to the needs of the buyer. That means, that one year the wh*** village is growing tomatoes, because the previous year they sold really well. But if this year the cuc**bers would have better price on them, because of oversupply of tomatoes, you can bet, the next year the wh*** village would plant cuc**bers.

It may seem like a really stupid thing to do, but if you are toiling in the garden the wh*** year and if you invest a lot of money into your garden, than it is easy to get afraid of the possibility, that you have worked for nothing and in fact lost a lot of money. That is why, my parents for example refuse to have garden in our "soon to be built" house. It just isnt worth the effort, the time and money. That is why many people, like them, are rather buying stuff from supermarkets.

So I think the problem of our country in terms of food security is diminishing of small farms and relying too much on food imported from who-knows-where. I think, that if we (as a country and as individuals) dont strive to be more self-sufficient, we cannot hope to improve the security of our food supply.

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