Thursday, May 22, 2014

Poor farmers

After two people presenting about chocolate, a lot of things have come to mind. I have drawn many similar conclusions about American farmers and farmers of things like chocolate. Both are struggling in today's society and are not being regarded as important, getting put in bad circumstances. 

With free trade with things like chocolate, the producers/farmers lack things like social, financial security, and other safety nets to be able to hold out on selling their products when prices are low in the market. Producers in prosperous nations can wait, while other producers do not have these options, needing to sell their products immediately to get as much money as possible, as often as possible. By doing this, they lose lots of money. Child slave labor is also a huge issue with the production of chocolate, but that is a larger issue as well.
Farmers in America are pressured to produce the crops that the high powered companies or government committees tell them to produce. It was shown in Food Fight how farmers are given contracts with high powered companies to produce things in a specific way and in specific quantities. Even if the farmers do not wish to produce it in a specific way, they are put in so much debt that a contract from one of these companies is the only way to get a much needed income. So they are cornered to be apart of this system, whether they want to or not. 

So each type of farmers, either in America or international in West Africa, are pressured to not make as much money as possible and do not have many options, being forced into a corner with the decisions that they make. Any yet, they are the ones who produce the food that we eat everyday, and they are not treated with that respect. We should be conscious of the decisions that we make and buy the products that work to help the little man like fair trade products.

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