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"...On July 15th, as I began my trip to Utah, I came off the Grapevine decline and hit the flat 250 or so mile stretch of interstate which begins the farming belt in the valley. Almost immediately I noticed what I had only heard about on the radio and in the papers. Where once there were vast fields of green, now there where empty, barely recognizable rows of unplanted dirt and growing weeds. Only sporadically at first, but once I passed Bakersfield and for about a 200 mile stretch, I could not believe my eyes. Field after field laid fallow. And not really fallow, but unattended... as if it was not going to be planted in the near future either.
Signs were staked in the ground on almost every patch of barren farmland. The most common one, which was yellow and obviously a group effort to wake up the sleeping travelers of their future plight, read:
"CONGRESS CREATED DUST BOWL"
Others, which looked more homemade were posted on non-operational farm equipment parked as close to the freeway as possible, stated things like:
"FOOD ONLY GROWS WHERE WATER FLOWS" -and- "NO WATER = NO JOBS = NO FUTURE"
At one point, after 150 miles or so of seeing this horror, I broke down in tears and had to pull over to the side of the road....It was like some horrific story-book come to life; science fiction in real time. I was thinking of the farmers and their families and wondering what would become of them and their land. I was thinking about the consequences of hundreds of miles of food no longer being grown, and adding together the other states like Campo, Colorado which have the same situation... only planting 60% of their crops this year...
...To the readers of this, I can only say that living in the city has literally blinded me to the truth, even though I knew it was happening. I wonder how many other things I ignore? Many economists and trends predictors have called for food shortages and food riots in the fall, and with what I saw last week, I have new reason to believe them.
But then, that's the real problem isn't it? Belief...
If you believe that the food will continue to flow (magically appearing on store shelves in a grocery store near you) and just dismiss the very real claims of shortages worldwide, including a severe wheat shortage in this country due to a harmfull fungus, then I might boldy say that you deserve whatever fate befalls you.
Originally posted by mikerussellus
reply to post by silent thunder
When the government subsidizes farmers NOT to grow food, it is a false way to control food prices.
More food, cheaper prices, big business makes no money.
We have the land, and the ability. No drive to do so, though.
Just my humble opinion. . .
Bulgaria Harvest Latest
As of July 15th Bulgarian farmers had harvested around 30% of the nation's wheat crop, with yields averaging 3.2 MT/hectare, according to the Agriculture Ministry.
Argentine Wheat Plantings Revised Lower Again
Argentine farmers will plant just 2.6 million hectares of winter wheat for the 2009/10 season, according to Oil World. That's 200,000 hectares down on their last estimate and a stunning 2.1 million less than was planted in 2008/09.
Brazil Turns To US For Wheat
Brazil, the world's third largest wheat importer, bought 51,000 MT of US wheat last week, that's more US wheat than it bought in the entire first six months of the year, despite a 10% import tax imposed by the government on purchases from outside the Mercosul bloc.
Canadian Crop Development Lags
Late planted crops in Saskatchewan continue to lag, leaving them vulnerable to an early freeze later in the season.
Ukraine Harvest Estimates
Ukrainian farmers are expected to be halfway through harvesting by the weekend, but estimates as to the size of the final grain crop this year still differ quite widely.
Russian Drought Damage Affects 3.3 Million Hectares
According to the Russian Agricultural Ministry 3.3 million hectares of the nation's spring crops have been badly damaged by drought.
A state of emergency has been declared in several regions along the Volga River and southern Urals, it says.
Spanish Grain Production Estimates Revised Lower
The Spanish agriculture ministry has revised down this year’s wheat and barley production estimates. Wheat output (excluding durum) is now projected 32% lower this year at 3.8 MMT, from the Ministry's previous forecast of 4.3 MMT and 5.6 MMT in 2008/09.
...[An] Irish farmer who was recently quoted as saying: "This is the third year in a row of really dreadful grain growing conditions with no light on the horizon for better harvesting conditions."
Tight supplies send US soy on wild price ride
* Supplies could hit 32-year low before harvest arrives
* Chinese demand strong, leading to record export sales
* US soy cheapest in world due to drought in S. America
India warns scanty rains to hit rice crop, bans food exports
India warned Friday that patchy monsoon rains were threatening its lifeline rice crop and said it would ban food exports as part of a plan to prevent any crisis.