Food Insecurity in Syria about to get Severe
Jul 18, 2012 05:01 AM EDT | By Sriranjini
Syria's agricultural sector is on the verge of collapse and its food crisis is only going to get worse.
Syria is in the midst of a revolution. The regime officials are under the impression that Syria has plenty of food to feed itself, and the ability to keep doing so.
But, that is turning out to be quite the opposite of the real situation.
Syrian farmers have been unable to plant anything in their fields, thanks to crippling fuel and fertilizer shortages. Both of these amenities are supposed to be provided by the central government officials, but so far, they have failed to do so.
Like Us on Facebook
Large areas of land, which are usually cultivated for wheat, fruits and vegetables, have been left fallow this season. This is due to the inability of farmers to get to their land, which is being blocked by checkpoints. Moreover, tanks are parked over agricultural fields, which means that farmers cannot go to work, even if they want to.
Though the full repercussions have not been felt yet, traders are anticipating a severe fall in the most basic food that Syrians eat, and a sharp incline in the prices of most vegetables, cereals and fruits.
Protests and armed rebellion have brought the major agricultural districts of Deraa, Idelb- famous for its olives, Ghoota and rural Damascus, almost to a standstill. A local business says that 85 percent of all agricultural activities have come to a stop.
"We'll harvest whatever comes off the trees naturally but nothing else, we've not been working the land, and there will be no wheat, no cotton or anything else," says Abu Yazin, owner of a smallholding on which he grows fruit trees and some crops.
This month the United Nations warned that 1.4 million Syrians had been affected by "food insecurity" since March, and estimated that Damascus would have to import about four million tonnes of cereals this year to meet domestic needs.
Though there has been sufficient rain, there has been no fuel or fertilizer or good seeds for the farmers to plant. Many farmers are of the belief that disaster can still be averted, if the central government allocates them fertilizers and fuel on time.
Fuel is a much required part of farming. The irrigation pumps and transportation used to carry seeds and fertilizers need fuel. But, most of the fuel is sent to the tanks, and not to tractors.
Publicly, the government continues to insist that all will be well with production, helped by strong winter rains that have ended years of drought.
Privately, however, officials monitoring the agricultural sector are alarmed; pointing out that the uprising has been strongest in the farming heartlands.
"Neglect and arrogance by the regime in Damascus towards the provinces is one of the reasons why we are seeing this uprising in the first place," said a Syrian economist. "This revolution has been powered by the dispossessed majority who live outside of Damascus and Aleppo, and conditions in the provinces are only getting worse."
The year has had plenty of innovations under its belt. From the world of the culinary arts to the technological inventions, the innovative bug has bitten and bit hard. There are plenty of foods to look forward to on a restaurant menu. However, certain recipes and foods have cut a mark above the rest and are now causing whirlwinds and taste bud cravings across the globe. Today we will look at a few of these foods. Here are out top three:
National Coffee Day – Wonderful date for all the people who do not only like starting off their days with coffee, but can’t get enough and need a dose repeatedly. Today, Sept. 29th, the National and actually International coffee day, according to Days of The Year, takes place. So, to celebrate it, we enlisted some of the most important places where you can find a great deal of free coffee.
Mornings can be a drag. Breakfast, the most important meal of the day, doesn't do much to kick the body's reflexes into action. If the traditional cereals, fried eggs and bacon is not an ensemble that does it for you, you might want to consider this amazing recipe I guarantee you will fall in love with
America's top three soda makers have agreed to cut down soda calories by 20%. In an agreement signed by representatives of Coca cola, Pepsi and Dr. Pepper Snapple Group Inc, the soft drink manufacturers declared they would be reducing the calories consumption of soda lovers across the United States by 20%.
If you’re visiting Japan at the moment and you’re already concerned with Halloween treats, there’s a great option for you: Japan’s gummy bug sweets.
Vagina Cookies – Sometimes a story is so good that it needs to be shared with the world. And sometimes that story is not only good but a real one and the quality becomes even better. What took place in a school is that a mother brought cookies to share with the children. They did have a particularity, though: they were vagina-shaped cookies.