Biden’s Food Conference to Push Environmental Extremism
The Biden administration should ensure the correct focus of a conference it will host next Wednesday on food-related issues such as nutrition and access to food.
The primary focus of this food conference, especially when Americans are suffering through food prices not seen in over 40 years, should be on the importance of efficiently producing safe and affordable food. And when it comes to health concerns, the focus should be on the health of Americans , not the health of the planet.
This all may seem obvious, but, unfortunately, it needs to be said.
Let’s start with agricultural productivity and affordable food. The latest consumer price index data show food prices in August were 11.4% greater than they were last August.
Year-over-year food prices have been above 4% (an unusually high level) for 12 straight months, starting in September 2021 (4.6%), with each successive month greater than the previous month.
There are many reasons for this increase in food prices. Government obstacles throughout the supply chain are a prime culprit, with the Biden administration’s current war on energy playing a lead role.
As well as examining how government is driving up prices, the president’s food conference should begin with the underlying assumption that, first and foremost, our nation’s food system should be efficient and provide affordable food. Environmental issues are important, but shouldn’t come at the expense of efficient production and low prices.
The U.S. food system is a model for innovation, productivity, and affordability. According to the Department of Agriculture’s latest data, spanning 1948 to 2019, farm output nearly tripled (a 175% increase) while the amount of land decreased. In fact, as farm output increased by 175%, all agricultural inputs increased by only 4%.
In 2021, despite high food prices, American consumers spent an average of about 10% of their personal disposable income on food, which is close to historic lows. For decades, this share has been in decline.
But some, including officials of the Biden administration, want the federal government to transform the nation’s food system and in essence centrally plan the entire food supply chain.
Many on the Left long have attacked the American food system and agricultural practices , arguing that they have caused incalculable damage and seeking to divert the focus of the food system to addressing climate change, moving away from fossil fuels, and other ancillary issues.
The government doesn’t need to transform our food system, and we certainly don’t need a central plan to do so. The environment or other alleged concerns shouldn’t be an excuse to control lives and push policies that would come at the expense of our food system and drive up food costs for Americans.
It is troubling that the Biden administration has embraced the goals of the United Nations Food Systems Summit ….
Header featured image (edited) credit: Food/orginal Examiner article
Emphasis added by (TLB) editors
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