Field Guides to Food

Food and Globalization

Curated by Phoebe Ward

"For the true measure of agriculture is not the sophistication of its equipment, the size of its income, or even the statistics of its productivity,  but the good health of the land."
Wendell Berry

This module discusses the globalization of the agricultural sector and its effects on the average farmer. Much of the world's food systems have now been folded into an economic system that covers the world. Like a spider's web, plucking one strand of this system resonates through the entire structure. And like the spider's web, individual players are drawn into this system whether they like it or not. Whether it is the Malian pastoralist whose grazing lands are now carved up by development, the Chinese company man whose job depends on a project across the world, the migrant worker laboring in American fields, or a Minnesotan farmer suddenly surrounded by abandoned homesteads, the reach of this system is extraordinary and thus deserves further investigation.

Ken Meter of Crossroads Resource Center discusses the impoverishment of rural America.
Ernesto Velez Bustos of Centro Campesino talks about the challenges migrant workers from Latin America face when they come to southwestern Minnesota.
William Moseley of Macalester College deconstructs the motivations behind the push for a second Green Revolution and the flaws built into the current paradigm of humanitarian aid.
Sunny Ruthchild of Merryweather Gardens in Walnut Grove, Minnesota describes her work as an organic farmer and the ideals she carries with her.

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