'Cheap food is damaging our health, the farming industry, and the environment', says a managing director of Waitrose.
'Value' is the favourite red-lettered sticker for their own-brand recession-proof ranges in supermarkets, but due to poor content cheap food may not be good value at all. There are no requirements for minimal contents to be stated on, for instance, a simple meat pie, where the proportion of meat may be very low.
Our grandparents spent a higher proportion of their wages on food than we do today, and amazingly we possibly spend a higher proportion of our income on our mobile 'phones than we do on food!
One bag of food in three is chucked out uneaten, and at the end of the day huge amounts of 'past their sell by date' perfectly good food is thrown away by supermarkets.
Cheap food also causes hunger when self sufficiency is destroyed by globalisation. When Mexico, for example, was flooded with US corn imports the poorer farmers were put out of business and the entire economy suffered. The Mexican environment suffered, there was increased poverty among food producers, inevitably increased food dependence, and subsequently hunger. Globalisation cheapens everything, and our land and life-sustaining food should never be cheapened.
In their rampant desire for increased profits Supermarkets are the culprits. Food has become a purely financial commodity, and the more people consume the more the money makers like it. The general public should wise up and realise that the real cost of cheap food is a high one, both to our own health and the welfare of those in other countries. With an ever increasing incidence of obesity, people should consume less, waste less, spend a little more, and buy wholesome home grown preferably organic food , and never plump automatically for the cheapest product on offer.