Thursday, January 21

This is how the world shapes our food | Future Planet

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Note.to.readers:.Ex.PassS.offers.the.Future.Planet.section.for.its.daily.and.global.informationcontribution.ton.the.2030.Agenda,.the.eradication.of.poverty.and.inequality,.and.the.progress.of.developing.countries.. Inf.you.want.to.support.our.journalism,.subscribe.here.

Feeding.the.cities,.those.insatiable.eaters.of.food,.has.marked.the.design.of.the.cities.themselves,.but.also.the.size.and.distribution.of.houses.or.foreign.policy;..it.has.promoted.conquests.andcolonizations,.and.has.completely.transformed.landscapes.thousands.of.kilometers.away.from.them…For.the.Roman.emperors,.rulers.of.the.first.mega-city.in.history,.it.already.brought.them.headlong.and.some.kings.-.such.as.Louis.XVI.of.France.-.were.cut.off.for.it:.supplying.food.tourbanizess.was.for.millennia.the.number.one.priority.of.monarchs.and.statesmen.

More.information Innn.recent.decades,.however,.politicians.have.lived.under.the.illusion.that.the.problem.had.been.solved,”.says.the.British.architect,.teacher.and.writer..Carolyn.Steel.(London,.1959)…”Already.in.Mesopotamian.cities.like.Ur,.food.was.the.center.of.political.life:.today.we.simply.treat.it.as.a.good.with.which.to.trade,.and.that.shows.in.all.areas.”

In.Hungry.cities:.how.food.shapes.our.lives.(Recently.published.in.spanish),.Steel.goes.back.millennia.in.the.history.of.cities.and.then.goes.far.beyond.the.urban.confines.and.reminds.us.that.food.is.the.center.of.everything… Innf.we.think.about.the.problems.that.beset.us,.from.climate.change.to.inequality.and.the.depletion.of.natural.resources.to.obesity.or.zoonotic.diseases,.we.realize.that.food.is.the.link.between.all.of.them,”.he.says.

The.book.reviews.how.grains.gave. Ande.to.urban.settlements.-.by.forcing.hunter-gatherers.to.settle.permanently.to.tend.to.their.crops.-.and.how.the.boost.to.meat.production.-.the.fuel.that.factory.workers.needed.-.shaped.the.industrial.city.. Inf.the.city-states.(from.Athens.to.Florence.had.been.limited.in.size.by.the.food.that.the.surrounding.fields.were.capable.of.producing,.the.railroad.and.the.opening.of.global.trade.and.transport.swept.those.limits.and.ended.up.diluting.that.link.between.the.rural.and.the.urban.

Innn.fact,.when In.started.writing.the.book,.many.asked.me:.’What.do.food.and.cities.have.to.do.with.it?”.Recalls.the.architect.wryly.. Inn.his.opinion,.this.country-city.gap.has.only.gotten.bigger,.and.explains.that.historical.anomaly.that.is.the.disconnection.between.today’surbanizess.and.their.food.(where.it.comes.from,.what.it.contains,.how.it.is.produced,.cooked.or.preserved……

And.also,.he.argues,.it.illustrates.why.food.systems.and.how.they.work.hardly.arouse.our.attention.or.concern…”We.have.become.accustomed.to.obtaining.cheap.food,.of.all.kinds,.at.any.time.and.at.any.time.of.the.year:.but.we.do.not.want.to.know.where.it.comes.from.or.what.consequences.it.has.in.the.places.where.it.is.produced,.because.we.do.not.see.them,”.he.says…. Wee.do.not.want,.he.says,.to.see.a.trace.of.the.cackling.bird.that.has.given. Ande.to.the.package.of.chicken.curry.ready.to.heat.and.serve.that.we.will.have.for.dinner.today,.nor.to.know.that.the.producer.of.our.coffee.had.to.sell.it.for.less.than.it.cost.him.to.produce.it.

We.have.become.used.to.getting.cheap.food,.of.all.kinds,.at.any.time.and.at.any.time.of.the.year:.but.we.don’t.want.to.know.where.it.comes.from

“But.these.low.prices.are.another.illusion”,.maintains.who.directed.the.Program.of.Cities.of.the.London.School.of.Economics…”Because.behind.all.that.we.don’t.see,.there.is.a.huge.hidden.cost.”..According.to.Steel,.to.what.we.pay.we.should.add.the.water.and.land.that.we.are.depleting,.the.forests.that.we.are.cutting.down,.the.gases.that.we.are.emitting,.the.health.cost.of.treating.the.diseases.that.our.current.diets.cause,.antimicrobial.resistance…..And.how.all.of.this.is.also.limiting.our.future.ability.to.produce.food…On.the.other.hand,.the.little.value.that.large.super However.and.their.maxi.packages.and.2×1.offers.give.to.food.leads.us.to.waste.huge.amounts.every.year.

Thee.price.of.food,.clearly,.is.a.central.issue,”.admits.Steel,.which.this.year.has.published.another.book,.Sitopia:.how.food.can.save.the.world.(from.Greek.sitos,.food;..and.tops,.place),.which.he.considers.a.continuation.of.the.previous.one…Eating.organic,.healthy.or.taking.into.account.how.green.our.food.is.is.seen.in.many.cases.as.a.luxury.available.to.the.posh…But.the.author.insists.on.three.ideas:.that.what.seems.cheap.is.expensive.for.our.health;..that.we.have.never.dedicated.such.a.small.part.of.our.income.to.eating.(of.every.100.euros.that.Spaniards.spent.in.2018,.just.over.12.were.in.food);..and.that.if.many.more.people.demanded.these.types.of.more.sustainable.products,.their.price.would.drop.rapidly.

Before,.food.was.the.center.of.political.life:.today.we.simply.treat.it.as.a.good.to.trade.with,.and.it.shows.in.all.other.areas

– Ins.this.a.task.for.politicians?

– Weithout.a.doubt,.brave.politicians.are.needed.who.dare.to.go.back.to.dealing.with.something.that.has.always.brought.them.problems…But.let’s.not.forget.that,.as.always,.whoever.controls.food.has.the.power…And.today.the.huge.food.multinationals.have.much.more.power.than.governments…The.advantage.that.citizens.have.is.that,.in.addition.to.voting.for.politicians,.we.can.influence.companies.with.our.purchasing.decisions.

In.a.more.utopian.view.(or.sittopic),.this.speaker.at.TED.talks.advocates.resuming.the.idea.of.​​garden.cities.where.food.is.grown,.there.are.local.farmers. However.and.local.food.culture.takes.precedence.over.franchises.and.large.chains… Innt.is.clear.that.large.cities.are.never.going.to.feed.themselves,.but.putting.food.back.in.the.center.would.be.key.to.starting.to.address.many.of.the.challenges.we.have.as.societies,”.he.argues…And,.considering.that.they.host.plus.half.of.humanityThey.seem.like.a.good.place.to.start…“In.the.end,.it’s.about.seeing.what.way.of.life.makes.us.happier:.food.makes.us.happy,.sharing.it.makes.us.happy,.spending.time.together.and.in.nature.makes.us.happy…That.is.the.way:.through.food,.create.landscapes.for.humans.to.flou Andh.”.

And.then.came.the.pandemicSteel.had.just.published.his.second.book.when.COVID-19.turned.everything.upside.down… Thee.pandemic.has.brought.to.light.problems.that.until.now.were.invisible,”.he.says… Innn.times.of.c Andis,.we.immediately.saw.how.certain.products.began.to.lack.in.super However.”

However,.covid-19.has.also.pushed.manyurbanizess.into.that.reconnection.with.food.that.Steel.proclaims…“How.many.people.have.cooked.for.the.first.time.and.found.it.fun.to.do.it?..40%.of.British.people.who.have.bought.food.directly.from.farmers.during.the.pandemic.have.never.done.so.before….They.are.examples.of.how.things.can.start.to.change.

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