Join The Nassau Institute at The University of The Bahamas Tuesday, November 7, 2017 for a lecture by Pierre Desrochers on ”“The Case against Locavorism and Food Sovereignty: Historical Perspectives on Long-distance Trade, Economic Development, Environmental Protection and Food Security.” in the lecture hall at the Harry C. Moore Library at of The University of The Bahamas starting at 6:30pm.
The event is free and open to the public. Space is limited and available on a first come first served basis.
One problem created by the unparalleled reliability and security of our globalized food supply chain is that too many people are unaware of the reasons having motivated its development. This wouldn’t be problematic if local food activists hadn’t successfully pushed the idea of drastically increasing our reliance on local food production in the name of, among other things, improving food security, saving family farms, creating jobs, delivering better nutrition, reducing environmental impact and creating social capital.
Professor Desrochers will challenge each of these claims, including the fact that activists call for putting all of one’s food security eggs in a regional basket as opposed to relying on multiple distant suppliers. Hurricanes, frost, floods, droughts, hail, tsunamis and other natural catastrophes, however, spare no region and do not discriminate between crops, no matter how diversified a local food system might be. As a result, most people in most places most of the time have historically struggled with recurring famine and malnutrition. It was only the development of effective long-distance transportation that made it possible to channel the surplus of regions that had good years to those that had bad ones, in the process eradicating some of humanity’s worst scourges.
The diversification of our food supply sources via cost-effective and large-scale, long-distance transportation is one of the great unappreciated wonders of our age. Its further development is the best way to improve the security of humanity’s food supply while simultaneously delivering economic development and environmental improvement. Local food may sound romantic but it is wasteful, inefficient, and accessible only to the privileged few.
About the speaker:
Pierre Desrochers is Associate Professor of Geography at the University of Toronto and co-author of The Locavore’s Dilemma: In Praise of the 10,000-mile Diet (PublicAffairs, 2012). His main research interests are economic development, technical innovation, business-environment interface, energy policy and food policy. The author of over 50 academic articles on these topics, he was the 2017 recipient of the Julian L. Simon Memorial Award for his research on environmental issues. He maintains a detailed website at http://geog.utm.utoronto.ca/desrochers/
This event would not be possible without the generous support of:
Templeton Religion Trust
Compass Point Beach Resort
Bahamas Wholesale Agencies Limited
Go Ahead Biscuits