Archive for food crops

Yeuk! Eating Bugs?

Posted in America, Britain, Children, England, Environment, Forests, UK, United Nations, USA with tags , , , , , on 14/05/2013 by floroy1942

Believe it or not, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) seems to think we should start eating creepy crawlies! Are they really serious? Well, I think the general consensus is they are, and heaven knows what the effects will be, not only on human health, but on the planet.

Bon Appetite!

Bon Appetite!

For hundreds of years, we have detested the sight of ugly little bugs that infest our homes, damage our crops and plant life, and become a damned nuisance. I suppose it would be poetic justice if we now reversed the roles and began to eat them. The pesky little critters wouldn’t know what hit them.

Biscuit Anyone?

Biscuit Anyone?

For sure, there are already 2 billion people around the world who regularly consume insects as part of their diet “because they are delicious and nutritious,”, according to Eva Mueller, director of forest economics at the FAO. The report states that many restaurants in Europe are beginning to feature bugs on their menus. I have to say that the first time I go into a restaurant and see bugs on the menu, I am out of there ‘tout suit’.

There can be little doubt they have a high nutritional value, being high in iron and protein, but not for me I’m afraid. I just can’t imagine catching a fly in the living room and popping it into my mouth as a snack!

Your Favourite Meal?

Your Favourite Meal?

In some countries, beetle larvae and termites are considered a delicacy, I need to find out which countries they and make sure I never go there. I guess I am an old fuddy duddy who, like many westerners would rather swat a bug than eat it.

The FAO pointed out that turning to bugs could help with world hunger and food shortages, which as any intelligent person will know is inevitable as the world population increases. They also point out that we could start feeding bugs to animals, presumably cattle, pigs and poultry etc. as a way to save vital crops for mankind. As you would expect, the animals will not have any say in this.

American Midwest Drought

American Midwest Drought

There can be little doubt as the population rises still further in years to come, there will be many countries joining the likes of Africa with its millions of starving people. In the future, it could even be America, for as we have seen this last year, tremendous droughts caused by climate change have stricken the growing fields of the central states that supply much of the country’s food. Even tiny England has had its agricultural areas smitten by drought. We have only begun to glimpse the effect global warming will have on our planet.

Rise In Global CO2 Levels

Rise In Global CO2 Levels

We have increased food production over the last fifty years to where the soil has long been exhausted, and now will not grow our essential food crops without masses of artificial fertilizer. We are decimating the forests that supply the planet with oxygen to the extent, that atmospheric CO2 levels have reached a record high that has not been seen on Earth for more than 3 million years. Now they want us to start on the bug population that is essential to continuing plant and bird life on the planet. The mind boggles!

Pretty Soon There Won't Be Anything Left For You Chum!

Pretty Soon There Won’t Be Anything Left For You Chum!

In my view, anyone who thinks that our plant life will successfully survive without bugs is a fool. We rely on the humble bee to pollinate our crops and plants for example, and the bee numbers are already in decline from pesticide use, but now the FAO says they are on the human menu! Birds are essential to keeping down the numbers of insect pests and the pollination of crops and plants, but from an estimated world population of between 200 to 400 billion in 2010, the numbers have declined rapidly as we destroy the forests and wooded areas. What does the FAO think that birds and small creatures eat? Well for the benefit of the illiterate among my readers I will tell you – Bugs! If the human race turns to eating these creepies the chances are it will have a devastating effect on bird and small animal life.

Can You Look At This And Say We Don't Have A Problem?

Can You Look At This And Say We Don’t Have A Problem?

There sure isn’t going to be enough bugs around to supplement the feeding of 8 billion people, a figure that is rising year on year I might add, and feed the bird and small animal population. The FAO seems to think that we can ‘farm’ bugs just like we do everything else, so does that mean all the wild ones will be perfectly safe and will not be gathered as food, or to start a ‘bug farm’.

World Population Reality

World Population Reality

We are successfully raping the planet of its natural resources, and no-one, with perhaps the exception of China, is taking any action to stem population growth, which will eventually destroy us all as more people begin starving and the food sources dry up.

It takes intelligence to accept what we are doing and unfortunately, the lack of it, coupled with the selfish attitude of people today, means all the warnings are being ignored. All that remains to be asked is: What of your children and their children?

Roy.

What Will We Do Without the Humble Bee?

Posted in America, Britain, Europe with tags , , , , , , , , on 10/04/2012 by floroy1942

Did you know that the honey bee is being poisoned out of existence? Have you any idea what could happen to the food chain if they cease to exist? Questions we need to ask ourselves, because they are disappearing fast, and science has finally found the cause.

Bees Are Essential

For a considerable time the number of bees in nature have been in decline and many people began to wonder why. They are extremely important to nature, and to us, because of what they do. Most people know that bees are responsible for passing pollen from one plant to another and therefore ‘pollinating’ them. That is to say they add the missing ingredient that enables a plant to reproduce, much like male sperm fertilizes a woman’s egg allowing us humans to reproduce. Without this action, many areas of our plant-life, including many basic food crops like wheat etc. will not be able to reproduce and thus die out.  

As you would expect there are other means of pollination available for plants such as the wind, birds, other insects and animals, but none do it half as well as the humble bee. Pollination is also a selective process whereby pollen from an apple tree for example will not fertilize an orange tree and vice versa. This is also true of the many beautiful flowers we grow in our gardens and parks, but imagine the scene without the bee.

Spreading More Poison

At last science has come up with the answer after much exhaustive study, and surprise, surprise, they say the culprit is certain pesticides sprayed by farmers on crops to kill harmful insects. In several studies the scientists have laid the blame squarely on pesticides that contain neonicotinoid which attacks the nervous system of insects, eventually killing them. It makes up part of very many insecticide compounds available to farmers in today’s market.

Tests as long ago as 1990 raised questions about this product due to its ability to survive in plant-life for many years. At that time there was also concern about its impact on the bee population, for it was believed by some to account for worker bees’ neglecting to provide food for eggs and larvae, and for a breakdown of the bees’ navigational abilities, leading to what has now become generally known as Colony Collapse Disorder or CCD.

Another Pollinator

Because they were only ‘concerns’ back then nothing was done about preventing their use and now they are used everywhere. In the United States alone some 143 million acres are sprayed with this product and who knows how many in Europe. In Slovenia its use was banned in 2003 due to ever increasing cases of CCD. Perhaps it is time for the rest of the world to do the same before it is too late!

However that is not as simple as it seems, because governments will have to fight the big corporations like Bayer and others who manufacture the stuff. Already they have started a campaign against the scientific findings by sowing seeds of doubt on the results in an effort to delay legislation as long as possible.

Do We Have To Say Goodbye To Such Beauty?

Any government that takes on these big multinational corporations will find it a hard fight for the companies affected have huge amounts of capital invested in their products. They don’t give a damn about the bee, or the effects of its population decline on food production, because all they can think of is profit! But they should realize that in the long term, they will be just as affected as the rest of us, but what the hell, that’s a long way into the future!

Roy.

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