Hungry Harvest: This is Their Story

1. Summarize your organization in one sentence.

We believe that no food should go to waste and that no person should go hungry. That’s why we source, hand pack, and securely deliver delicious boxes of recovered produce on a weekly and bi-weekly basis. For every delivery, we subsidize 2 lbs of produce for families living in food deserts through our produce in SNAP sites.

2. How long have you been running your organization?

We founded Hungry Harvest in 2014 on the University of Maryland campus.

3. Why did you decide to start the organization?

I’ve always believed that through social entrepreneurship, we can exact swift systemic change to some of the biggest problems our world faces with regard to food justice.  I started this company with the belief that food is a right, not a privilege, and work daily to increase access to fresh produce to those in need.

4. What has been your biggest achievement so far?

This year we surpassed 3 million pounds of food recovered and 500k pounds more donated.  You can’t put a price, or a TV show appearance, or an award on the look on people’s faces when you hand them a full box of fresh produce and know that on that day, they will not be hungry because of your team’s work.

5. How do you measure success?

Every few months we anonymously survey our team to take a pulse on happiness in the work they are doing and belief that we are authentically serving the company mission.  My team is at a 9.2 overall satisfaction rating, which grew .02 from the last poll; we’ve never been under 9.  Our customer ratings are in the 9’s as well, and our number one growth metric is in friend referrals: people get our product, love it, believe in us, and want to share it with their community.  That’s authentic success. That’s how I know we’re doing the right thing.

6. What have you learned in the process?

To be flexible and listen.  Our direction is always toward ending food deserts and bringing about food justice for all.  It’s the way we listen to customer and team feedback to make better choices every day that keeps us moving forward.

7. What advice would you give to someone trying to get involved in food recovery?

Do it. The systemic issues in the food industry are vast and complicated.  It’s going to take a myriad of solutions to truly fix the problem of food waste, hunger, fair compensation for farmers, and more efficient logistics from farm to fork.  We are one solution, but I look forward to more people joining this cause and bringing new ideas and technologies to fill in the gaps toward a more whole solution.

8. What’s next?

Expansion & wholesale.  We are launching our Miami office shortly, with plans to add 3 more cities by year’s end on the East Coast. Through our wholesale channels, we are able to rescue and serve more broadly across the states to help connect food to consumption.

9. Anything else you want to add?

We are indebted to our subscribers, and to our partners.  None of this would be possible without a community of people who truly believe in food justice, and help us each day to better our product, and our service. Thank you doesn’t begin to cover the appreciation the team and I feel for your support.

10. Fun question: What was the best meal you ate this week?

Oh man, that’s a tough call! We are always sampling new produce and recipes posted by our recipe club, so many good things to choose – this week in particular I’d have to say the Asian Pear, Arugula & Feta pizza one of our ambassadors made up. There are few things better than a fresh made pizza on a beautiful sunny day.

Evan Lutz, CEO and co-founder of Hungry Harvest

La Faim du Monde: This is their story

1.    Summarize your business in one sentence. 

La Faim du Monde is a project that aims to reduce food waste by raising awareness around the issue, as well as, by finding solutions that businesses can implement in practice.

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2. How long have you been in business? 

Our first website was launched in 2012, and the first trip where 100% of all the food consumed came from dumpster diving, was completed in 2014.

Currently, the plan is to travel from Paris to New York, only consuming food  that is destined for the dustbin. This journey will invovled bicycyling and paddle boating across the ocean.

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To bring global attention to this issue we started a petition urging the best before dates on food to be removed in Europe. We are also researching the freeze drying process on food, to see if it’s a better option that sending it to the landfill. The process of freeze drying food, where the water is removed (not by heating the product but by freezing it),  enables the food to last as long as needed. It’s a bit like putting it in the freezer, only you don’t need more energy for it, and the food regains its original taste when water is added again.

3. Why did you decide to start the company?

I realized that we were wasting a big amount of food when working, while completing my studies, and I felt the need to do something about it. I couldn’t continue working at the same place when I saw that we were in some ways responsible for the starvation of people, without talking or raising awareness about agriculture and the environment.

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4. What has been your biggest achievement so far? 

I’m not sure we achieved anything yet. There have been many conferences around Europe, but how can we know if it’s useful? This takes time.

5. How do you measure success?

As we are dealing with a global issue it’s quite difficult. We will know this once we have reached a goal of creating a world where no person goes hungry. On a smaller scale, people give us feedback on how they realized the importance of this issue and decided to take actions as well, starting from their home (for instance, by wasting less food).

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6. What have you learned in the process? 

Lots of things about nutrition. About how our body works, how to work with others, how to share knowledge, and other useful things like that.

7. What advice would you give to someone trying to start a sustainable food company?

Anyone who wants to reduce food waste as well. I suppose the best thing they can do is to join us!  :D haha. No, just be happy about what you do!

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8. What’s next? Anything else you want to add?

Well, if we convince the European Parliament to remove the best before dates and get all supermarkets to freeze dry their food rather than throwing it away, I’m not sure what we would do. If every one had enough to eat I think we would want to bring peace, try to ask people to create globally a universal anthem, and show everyone that the most important human values are shared by all of us. It would be an anthem to life, love, empathy, fraternity, joy, etc., and it would probably help people stop considering every problem as being caused by someone else. We are dreamers, but we work hard on making our dreams come true, and we are not alone, maybe someday you’ll join us … If you are on Facebook, you can find us here.

And if you do want to join us, then please sign the petition to ask the European Parliament to remove the best before dates.

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9. Fun question: what was the best meal you ate this week?

Alice, who is part of the team made me a really good vegan and organic breakfast. Fresh fruits, oranges, banana, apple, kiwi and soy yogurt. Also, some avocado on black bread, cereals, and to drink, a british tea. It was really good for me, especially because I can never eat really good things when I am in Paris.

by Dubanchet Baptiste

Food Recovery is Great, but far from Perfect

I’ve tried my fair share of seemingly-strange food combinations, but I have never thought to try combining tomatoes and chocolate in anything other than Mexican mole sauces. However, I read a story on NPR a couple weeks ago about how three Spanish chefs had created chocolate truffles with dried Nigerian tomatoes – and served them at the World Economic Forum, no less! The creations, “Bombom Kaduna,” were designed to raise awareness of the fact that 75% of Nigeria’s tomatoes are annually wasted.

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Professor Christopher Barrett of the Charles H. Dysons School of Applied Economics and Management was one of several people quoted in the article scoffing at the idea. One thing he took issue with, which I saw echoed in an op-ed in The Globe and Mail last week, is the concept of trying to use food waste to alleviate world hunger. As the latter article notes: “Hunger is what happens as a result of privation and poverty. Treating hunger through society’s waste compounds the indignity of hunger, and points us away from more permanent solutions.”

I wholeheartedly agree that food recovery is not the solution to hunger. These two articles do a good job discussing how poverty should be better addressed to combat hunger, but I also know that the problem of food waste warrants much more comprehensive strategies. First off, it seems pretty impossible to recover the over 1 billion tons of food that are “lost” every year. Secondly, most of the world’s food waste stems from so-called first world, such as the United States and European Union, while most of the world’s hungry people live in rural Asia and Africa. The logistics of transplanting the excess of one country to another isn’t feasible on a large enough scale to feed all those in need.

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That is not to say that there are not food insecure people in the first world or that food recovery is by any means a bad idea. Donating to soup kitchens and food banks is an excellent use of surplus, even if it isn’t a solution to hunger or its causes. However, there is a danger that food donors might not take any other steps to prevent waste. After all, what’s wrong with generating excess when it’s going to feed hungry people? Well, not only does it dehumanize the hungry by treating them as garbage bins; it also encourages a food system that promotes overabundance, thereby waste.

The best compromise, I believe, is one that my college practices. I am a student Food Recovery Network volunteer at the University of Rochester, and we freeze surplus from campus dining establishments to deliver to a local soup kitchen. Most importantly, we inventory the kinds of foods being donated so that the school can see what foods it can afford to cut back on. For instance, we now find ourselves donating far fewer bagels than we did four years ago, when they constituted the majority of our inventory, because the school has adjusted to the apparent lack of demand.

Food recovery is not the be-all, end-all solution to hunger or food waste. However, it’s a good step in the right direction and brings attention to these critical issues.

Eva

Hunger isn’t pretty

A world that throws away 40-50% of the food it produces must be super healthy and wealthy, right? No, not at all. Our world is filled with millions of people who are hungry and malnourished. In the USA, close to 50 million people are unsure about their next meal. They have to choose between paying their bills and buying food.

A new series looks at this problem in the UK. “Britain Isn’t Eating” was created by the Guardian newspaper. Through short videos, viewers take an honest look at what it’s like to have nothing to eat. Or have food, but no electricity to cook it with.

Hunger isn’t pretty, and some need outside assistance for proper nutrition. When will governments and supermarkets realize that $165 billion worth of food should be on the table, not in the landfill?

Here’s to being the change we want to see!
Hokuma

My eyes are open. I’m in shock!

food.recovery.saynotofoodwaste.hunger.sustainability.happy2What I’m about to say must stay a secret. A truth that we all know, but don’t talk about. A taboo of sorts. Something along the lines of: we know that processed food and tobacco is bad for us, but we still consume fast food and smoke cigarettes.  Both the industry and the public knows about its harms, but does it anyway.

So, you’re wondering, what does this lady want to share that seems so shocking? And truth be told, for those involved in the food redistribution and food donation industry, this is probably old news. But for someone just coming into this field, it’s a major wake up call!

The secret

As some of you may know, every weekend I help redistribute surplus food from an organic local market to a non-profit that weekly prepares and shares meals with the homeless. The food that I handle is fresh, colorful, organic and expensive. Most people who work and don’t rely on assistance wouldn’t be able to buy these produce on their paychecks. So when I drive with a trunk full of expensive and valuable produce to be donated to those in need, instead of being thrown in the trash, I feel pretty darn happy and proud of myself!

Well, this week I had a chance to speak to a few non-profits as I expand the food redistribution network of Say No To Food Waste. And while all the non-profits I spoke with told me they are happy to receive more food, I was saddened by the type of food their clients wanted to receive.

It turns out, individuals who are faced with food insecurity want comfort food. They DO want help, but they DON’T want to change their diet or taste buds. Many are used to processed, fried, salty and sweet meals. So when they see colorful, fresh and organic food, they A) Don’t know what to do with it, or how to cook it, and B) They feel that it’s not as tasty and therefore want to throw it away.

WHAT?

saynotofoodwaste.hunger.foodwaste.sustainability.love.volunteer.happy.1That’s just insane! Here I am, so happy to be rescuing fresh produce that is extremely expensive, and helping people not just eat, but eat healthy, and then learn that the people I’m working hard for desire foods that aren’t healthy (non-organic, non-vegetarian, fast food). It really blew my mind!

Of course, there is no one here to blame but ourselves. As I mentioned earlier, we all know that tobacco and processed foods are bad, but most of us still smoke and eat fast food. Our choices and motivators have shifted from long-term results to short-term pleasures. Looking at the state of affairs of our environment and economy, this is very well and easy to see.

But I couldn’t believe that individuals who are in need, and rely on assistance, were voicing their concerns about the food they were receiving. That it was too different for them and they didn’t know what to do with it. This challenge requires immediate action of changing people’s behavior. But that’s a hard thing to do.

Solutions?

I feel that the best solution for this problem would be to make cooking fun! Make discovering new dishes a form of travel that most people can afford. And create curiosity for people around new tastes and sounds. Such as crispy red peppers crunching and bursting with flavor in your mouth. Or sliding a celery stick through soft and rich humus, sprinkled with olive oil.

All these things make me happy! They make me feel good, and I realize that I was taught to eat local and fresh from childhood. Most people weren’t. But I am positive that once people open the veil in front of their eyes and accept truth for what it is, we will stop killing our bodies with toxins from food and tobacco, and begin to cherish ourselves and the planet.

I hope I’m not wrong on this one.

With much love,
Hokuma

Food Politics

Local market in Quito
Local market in Quito

Empty stomachs and overflowing landfills. People eating ‘trashy’ fast food, while organic food is rotting away in the waste bins.

What world am I describing? Ours. Why? Because whenever there are politics, money making and mass consumption involved, illogical things become the status quo, while logical ideas become stories belonging to a ‘utopian‘ world.

One billion people are dying from hunger, while our world is producing more than enough for everyone. The only problem is that most of the food we produce is wasted, about 40% of it.

There are various reasons for food waste, some are understandable: lack of weather pattern information, need for better technology, bad infrastructure for transportation in developing countries, but other reasons fall under ‘first world problems’. A bruised apple, a banana that doesn’t meet the right curvature, and those sneaky ‘sell by dates’ created by manufacturers to keep their food moving on grocery shelves.

I’d like to dedicate today’s post to the country of Malaysia. It has been in the news for the past few days as people all over the world try to resolve the mysterious case of the missing MH370 airplane. It is devastating to see so many lives parish anonymously, and  my heart goes out to all the family members who are stuck in limbo, not knowing whether to keep hope for a better ending, or to start making funeral arrangements.

The sad reality is that 239 deaths from this incident doesn’t come close to the millions dying from hunger on a yearly basis. And while there isn’t much we can do to prevent such airplane accidents, there is definitely a LOT we can do to change our current food system to ensure that children and women don’t die from malnutrition.

800px-Oxfam_East_Africa_-_A_mass_grave_for_children_in_DadaabOur food system is a mess, and we need to address factors that will help strengthen our food security. That includes, lowering the carbon impact of our food by cutting down the distance it travels, eating seasonally and organically.

Big companies like Monsanto want us to believe that GMO foods are the only solution to feeding 9 billion people, but that’s just talk. Studies have repeatedly shown that there is no clear evidence that GMO foods provide higher yields, and there is definitely no clear evidence to show that messing with the genetical make up of our food (mixing it with genes of animals in some cases), is safe for our health.

What HAS been proven effective for the past thousands of years of human existence is local farming, eating by the seasons and preserving food for winter times.

In countries like Malaysia, a lot of pristine agricultural land is used for commercial production of crops that are exported to affluent regions and used for animal feeds. Beside that, many poor farmers in developing worlds cannot afford to use conventional techniques, machinery and crops to grow food. Therefore, turning to local and sustainable production of organic food would not only allow farmers to sell healthy produce, but do it in a manner that preserves and keeps their land healthy for future seasons. This means, disadvantaged farmers can protect their land, grow delicious food, improve the health of their community and their own, and if enough is left, sell this organic produce for a better price on the international market.

organic.food.sustainable.future.hunger.9billion.planet.healthy.happyIn December of 2012 there were 96 certified organic farmers in Malaysia. This number is expected to rise as organic and sustainable farming becomes the ‘go to‘ option for many countries. This trend is also visible in Azerbaijan, the country I’m from. Since 2000 more than 2,000 farmers were trained in organic farming and have moved their practices away from conventional methods.

The health of our planet and our people is not an option, it is a vital factor for a sustainable and happy future. It is time that all of us realize this and work towards making this the ‘status quo’. In my next posts I will focus on how individuals can eat healthy without having to pay too much money for it.

If you have any ideas or suggestions to contribute, please feel free to comment or e-mail me. You can also see some suggestions that list the ways companies, consumers and manufacturers can lower their food waste.

Here’s to a healthy and happy life!

Cheers,
Hokuma

Disco Soupe DC Style

For all those that came out and supported the FIRST Disco Soupe DC – THANK YOU!!
We had a blast, saved food from landfills and fed more than 200 homeless individuals.
If you missed the first event, but would like to join for the future ones drop me a line –
saynotofoodwaste@gmail.com.

Enjoy and share this video to help build our DC Disco Soupe community!

Experience isn’t everything, passion is

disco soupe 2014On February 19, 2014, I organized the first Disco Soupe in the capital of the most powerful country in the world. With amazing partners, I helped donate almost 200 pounds of food towards Thrive DC, a local organization that feeds 200 homeless individuals Monday to Friday.

Two months ago, as I was sitting in my room, desiring to take part in a Disco Soupe event, and knowing that one had never been done in Washington, D.C., I realized I would have to step up to the plate and make it happen myself.

To my luck, my passion for stopping food waste has been around for some time since I launched this website, and I was more or less familiar with organizations that existed both close by and abroad that could give me advice. Yet, I didn’t have a team, no specific stream of food donation, no venue space and a zero dollar budget to make this happen.

Anyone else in my shoes may have felt intimidated by the daunting task, and on some days I was intimidated too, but what kept me going was the need to dream big and do everything in my power to realize my dream. I created an e-mail, googled organizations, found contacts, charities, markets, anyone and everyone working with food, who could possibly be interested in helping me put the event together.

From the many e-mails that I sent, some went unanswered, some refused my invitation politely, but some responded with positivity and a desire to lend a hand! Through organizations such as Food Not Bombs, Nourish Now and MOMs, I was able to collect about 200 pounds of food. And with the kindness of individuals like Brian Best from the St. Stephen & the Incarnation Episcopal Church, I was able to find a kitchen and a beautiful venue to host the event.

choppingWith the questions of food and location resolved, it was much easier to invite organizations to take part in promoting it, finding volunteers to chop up food and local artists to provide entertainment. And yesterday, all that was left to do was show up to the coolest event in DC!

There were individuals from the National Geographic Society, Union Kitchen, Loudoun Veg, Zenful Bites, Compost Cab, SW Community Gardens, DC Time Bank, Livity Drink Co. and Feeding the 5k. The feedback was amazing! Everyone felt good about making time to help the less fortunate, and meeting face-to-face with individuals running the organizations that are making the DMV area a more sustainable and equal place.

And that’s exactly what such events are meant to do – build a community of concerned individuals who can combine their resources to make a difference. I may have started planning this event alone, but it was with the help of volunteers and amazing organizations that the first Disco Soupe in DC turned out to be a success!

in the kitchenMy take home lesson is: whether you are a beginner or an expert in whatever sphere you want to focus on, don’t be intimidated. Set the goal clear in your mind, and reach out to others. There will be many who will ignore your requests, but there will be many more that will help you achieve your big dreams, and sometimes, even surpass them!

Expect more Disco Soupes to come, with bigger spaces, bigger food donations and more local artists! So if you missed out on this one, make sure to join others! I will also prepare a pdf with direct contacts to organizations that took part yesterday and that will make sharing resources much easier!

Written by
Hokuma Karimova

Agriculture in Brazil – How to Feed the World?

201035ldp004Recently we have posted an article published by The Economist about the agricultural miracle in Brazil. Right away we thought that something is wrong about the logic presented in it. One of our fans Manon Crozet have written a critic for us. We wanted to share it with you:

“First, I would like to say that my critics are not as simple as saying “industrial farming is bad!”. It is much more detailed than that and the problems (not) raised by the author are much deeper. Unlike he says, being opposed to his comments is not saying “organic is beautiful”, it is more complicated than that.

My critics will be linear.

The first sentence that stroke me was: […] it decided to expand domestic production through scientific research, not subsidies. Instead of trying to protect farmers from international competition—as much of the world still does—it opened up to trade and let inefficient farms go to the wall.” 

The first part implies a shallow critic to subsidies for agriculture, among others, in Europe for instance. The author ignores or clearly does not know what would be the state of Europe’s countryside if subsidies did not exist, in terms of landscape and human life conditions. Subsidies in Europe protected farmers from being rejected from their own profession by economic and market laws. It is one of the rare professional fields that indeed cannot be totally submitted to international market laws without being totally changed in its structure and justice. Of course I am not saying that there is no abuse of these subsidies and that their use is not sometimes dishonest but without the CAP (Common Agricultural Policy) in Europe that guarantees subsidies to a lot of farmers, the main part of agricultural properties would have died (most of Europe’s agriculture is made of family farms) and its agricultural market would be even more dominated by industrial and multinational lobbies. Family farms cannot compete with multinational production (meaning huge farms in the US, Brazil, Argentina, Russia, etc. led by companies like Monsanto or Bayer) without subsidies, unfortunately. And lots of farmers would really prefer to make a living only of what they produce and not also of what they receive.

The second part of the quote is obviously shocking: not protecting the people who feed their own family with their small property, and letting “inefficient farms” die, that is admirable, indeed. Who wants to give a standing ovation to that?

The author certainly forgot that 85% of farm producers in Brazil are small and family producers. They account for only 25% of the land used for agriculture but they supply 70% of what the Brazilian people buys and eats IN the country . Please, let go to the wall 85% of the people who work to feed you. Come on.

Next, the author presents the “agropessimists’ prescriptions” as he calls the people who are, to me, aware of the world’s agricultural stakes. In his listing, one can feel the critic of his tone. So does the author think considering sustainability as a main virtue, encouraging small farms, thinking it is more important to sell products on a local market than to export, is ridiculous? It seems like it and if it is the case, he gives the impression to live 50 years ago. Has he forgotten that producing and selling on a small scale is the work and passion of millions of people? Has he forgotten that sustainability is a virtue we cannot live and see a future without, nowadays? Has he forgotten the environmental damage of large scale production and exporting business?

On the contrary, I am not saying producing on a large scale and exporting is not important: thousands of people work in this field, meat production would not be able to supply our demand (I am, myself a huge carnivore), and it empowers countries. That is good, but as in every subject, making the balance shows your knowledge and your wisdom. On this theme, how is it possible to forget such a large amount of things?

Let’s read another quote: “Brazil’s farms are sustainable, too, thanks to abundant land and water.”

I do not think the author ever questioned himself about what sustainability is. One’s business is not sustainable depending on the existing amount of the things one uses, but on HOW one uses them. Land and water are, indeed, HUGE resources in Brazil. But the big farms that use them are far from being sustainable. These resources look endless in Brazil but they are not. It is not because the resource is abundant that you can use it without counting and be sustainable. What makes your business sustainable is your capacity to preserve it, use it the least you can, reject it clean, even though it is abundant. Economically, these farms are, for now and yet a long time, sustainable. Environmentally, I will not even comment, I will just say that the themes of pesticides, GMOs, the use or not of ploughing, monocultures, certified and patent seeds could be discussed in relation to this article but it would be too long and it opens a huge debate once again. And socially, once more, the author ignores, forgets, a great problem present in Brazil for decades. The multinational farms installed for a great many of them in Mato Grosso, Mato Grosso do Sul, Bahia, Goiás, São Paulo, have literally colonized Indian lands, sending the populations to live out of their original homes, concentrated in some areas, in more than dark agreements between who knows whom… Very often, these people, work in these farms, barely paid, and totally submitted. Unfortunately they don’t really have the choice and trying to complain is dangerous. The power of the new land owner is so big that bothering him in his business threatens your life. The symbol of this danger is the former environmental activist and seringueiro producer (amazon tree cultivated for its sap) Chico Mendes who was killed in 1988 by big farm producers. A long time ago, but we don’t forget.

If this is sustainable for the author I don’t know where he got his definition.

The author gives various reasons to admire the “Brazilian agriculture” (reminding that he includes only 15% of producers of the country). This agriculture is efficient and productive. It is true. In the field of cotton, soya, sugar cane and more, these farms are fantastic in terms of technologies, yields and costs of production. No wonder no one can compete with them. It IS a miracle, technically. I do not deny this. But reading Africa should take Brazil as an example was the biggest shock for me. The rob of some peoples’ land is already happening in Africa and applying the Brazilian example could of course make its farming produce economy skyrocket but would also have disastrous social, environmental and local economic consequences. When locals of African cities buy imported rice from Brazil (with which local farmers cannot compete because the cost of Brazilian large scale production is so low that even imported rice from Brazil can be cheaper than local rice in Africa) or start to buy locally produced rice on the example of large Brazilian farms,  they will not buy local rice coming from small scale agriculture anymore and its producers will stop their activity and make the slums of the cities grow bigger and bigger, unfortunately for them and for the common good. This is already happening with farm produce from the giants of agriculture like Brazil and the Brazilian way of farming is far from “being more likely to do good in the poorest countries of Africa”, if one cares about the rural population of course.

Last but not least, the author tackles the accusation that is classically made about Brazil: Brazil destroys its Amazon forest. He recognizes that it has been the case and adds that most of the revolution of the past 40 years has taken place in the cerrado, hundreds of miles away”, precising that in this way, there is no “need to touch the natural wonders”. That is true, but that is not the problem. Saying this, the author contributes to the common image that the cerrado is a dry, unfertile and useless landscape. This is ignoring that the cerrado is a whole ecosystem in itself with a generous biodiversity. Of course we are not talking about beautiful parrots or monkeys. We are talking about thousands of native plants, 1200 species of fish, 837 species of birds, 180 species of reptiles, a large number of insects. A lot of these species are endemic to the cerrado. Without forgetting that the cerrado contains 220 species of medicinal plants and more than 10 species of fruits that are all regularly used and consumed by locals. The fruits are also consumed in the cities of the country. Indians communities and quilombolas (communities of descendant of slaves that fled and created quilombolas) are present in this ecosystem and have a traditional knowledge of all its resources.

So of course, extending the agricultural frontier in other spots than in the amazon is a good thing but let us not say that it does not destroy ecosystems that are rich and contain the resources that permit populations to survive. The cerrado is maybe not a natural wonder to the common eye, but it is to the eye of thousands of people who give value to such a rich ecosystem or to the eye of people who also give it a practical value and for whom it is a source of nutrients and cures.

These are my critics to this article that was published 3 years ago.

I will just finish by reminding also that the producers included in this article, for a lot of them, do not produce food for humans. The title “How to feed the world” is just funny, ironically speaking. An important part of these lands are used to produce soya for European farm animals or sugar cane to provide the cars in São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro, among other crops of course.

So I will let you imagine how curious I got when I saw this title associated to the beautiful photo (and I am not being ironic) of this grown field. It is a picture that does not represent, to me, a solution to economic, environmental and social problems that are rising in front of us. I think the author chose the wrong title: behind “world”, read “corporate lobbies”. Thank you.”

Manon Crozet

Final semester student in agricultural and environmental engineering

Double-degree AgroParisTech (Paris, France) / ESALQ-USP (São Paulo, Brazil)