The Future of Food is Personal

If you believe the hype from the Lame Stream Media, you would think the future of food consisted of either genetically-engineered mutant creations from the laboratories of FrankenFood Inc., or 3D-printed pseudo-steak from your own table-top synthesizer.

Well, there already exists a 3D-printer that can turn plants into meat; it’s called a cow. And that’s only one of the reasons why I say the future of food is personal.

Solar powered self-replicating 3D Steak Printer

You may have recently observed the fragility of the world-wide supply chain courtesy of Corona-chan. A country literally on the other side of the world comes down with the flu, and the impact is felt world-wide in everything from car manufacture to the stock market (free tip: go ‘long’ surgical gloves and masks).

In Canada right now, we have some Native groups disrupting rail traffic across the country. It has reached the point that heating oil and propane may be in short supply in the near future.

BTW yesterday’s low in my neck of the woods was -25C, -13F.

There is also an impact on the availability of chlorine to treat water supplies.

I’m on a well. I’ve got a wood stove and dry wood stacked away.  I’ve got a couple freezers full of beef, pork and chicken, a pantry full of preserves, and potatoes, onions, carrots, and garlic in my cold room.

I got a box of Honey Nut Cheerios too, but that’s just for me, and I’m not sharing ;-)

My round-trip shopping is about 72 feet from my kitchen door.

Most of the townies are not so lucky. All of which to say, the further we get from a local food supply, the more fragile that food supply is. That’s one of the reasons I keep plugging away at my farm, and the reason I launched the Merrickville Mid-week Market a couple years ago.

Environmental disruption, natural disasters, economic and political unrest, and good old Mother Nature can wreak havoc on your ability to grab enough calories for survival. The more you have your hands on the means of production, the more secure you will be.

The future of food will rely on your personal network

We are returning, willingly or unwillingly, to a time when local farmers fed their communities, and were in turn supported by those communities with goods and services. I think it’s a good idea to start learning how to be a part of that food web.

Start by making sure you can feed yourself; fill up your freezer and pantry. Cooperate with your neighbours. I didn’t grow the beef in my freezer; I bartered some of my pasture-raised poultry for it.

Support your local grower and your local farmers market. I’m proud to say that that the market I launched provided a venue for about a dozen first-time vendors.

I’ve traded my farm goodies for everything from organic ice cream to herbal sleep tinctures. You have to seek out these opportunities. Or be lucky enough to plug into the local network that’s already there.

The future of food, and everything else, is personal. Learn to go local like you have to, before you have to.

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