Sunday, 5 February 2017

An Argument With James Wong Via Facebook!

 Following James Wong on Facebook I sometimes comment on what he writes or shares, and even though he is quite famous he quite often writes back.
Doesn't mean he's right though...



Good to know that I've got a couple of friends who've got my back as well! 

What do you think?

Is eating in season, growing your own or buying local a good solution to helping combat future food shortages? 

34 comments:

  1. How wonderful that you guys can have pointed, sincere dialogues based on your own views, without yelling at each other or calling one's parentage into question....! I am more on Kevin's view, but James has valid points, too. The answer, in my experience, is often somewhere in the middle - regardless of topics. Science is a tool to observe, test and evaluate. As the thesis moves, so too do the observations and their deductions. Cheers for BOTH of you. More, please!

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    1. Thank you! Your comment really made me smile when I read it yesterday. I really like a good debate and I like to see both sides of the argument (if I can).

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  2. During WW2 here in the US, the government encouraged people to do Victory Gardens. 20 million gardens produced 8 million tons of food (futurefarmers.com) that being said, I believe that push should be made. Here in the US, lettuce hasn't changed in price, nor have there been any limits. Iceberg lettuce doesn't have a lot of nutritional value anyway.

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    1. Ice burg lettuce doesn't have a lot of taste either! My argument is that if we're eating out of season it makes us far more likely that we're buying from abroad and that in turn risks our food security. The victory gardens were big over here as well, and I believe with mordern organic methods we could (if we had to) produce far more than they did then.

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  3. Grab a cup and watch it Kev.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JpfMM3bVbhQ

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    1. I'll add it to my watch list and watch it while cooking tea.

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  4. Why anyone would want to eat an Iceberg Lettuce in Winter; I have no idea!

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    1. Why they want to eat it anyway really! But in winter is beyond me. It's not just the lettuce though, the whole way we eat as a nation (not you guys) needs looking at and readjusting.

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  5. We eat in season and locally, it's much better for us, the local economy and the greater picture. Plus we have the benefits of redescoving the seasonal fruit and veg when it's ripe. It's not rocket science.

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    1. I love when somethign coems back in season. I tell you after 5 months of eating courgettes I'm glad of a break, but I can't wait for that first fresh one to come back onto my plate!

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  6. I was very disappointment with his view, eat seasonal and eat local, makes sense to me

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    1. Thanks for fighting my corner Dawn! Good to know you've got my back!

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  7. Like Dawn I'm disappointed with JW who seems to be saying there is no way to feed ourselves by eating seasonal and local.
    We have survived quite well by never buying an Iceberg lettuce!

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    1. I thik that was the worst bit, he's almost dicounting british farmers ability to feed us. I certainly don;t think we could do it with the current system, we'd need to switch to a horticultural based system rather than a agrarian system (field). With modern methods I think we could almost get there but everything would have to change and that isn't goign to happen!

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  8. Good for you all - I would have commented too if I'd seen it. Buzzwords, is he for real. Well done everyone.

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    1. He's an interesting guy to follow on facebook and although his views aren't always the same as mine I still have a lot of respect for the guy.

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  9. Interesting! His "us scientists" was extremely revealing, as was his concept of "buzz words" and how to use them. This conversation was an excellent example of how so-called scientists can turn a blind eye to reality!

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    1. I think that his buzzwords were different from mine, we were certainly both using them.

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  10. Good grief, let common sense rule!

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    1. He has some valid points, but I still think mine makes more sense. Follow him on facebook, he puts up some really interesting articles.

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  11. Well done Kev, I agree with you and I suspect you'll probably find he's tied into some sort of contract to advertise a company that won't allow him to endorse eating seasonally due to their import practices.
    Nat.

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    1. If that's the case I'll be really disappointed. I've been a fan of his for years and I just feel it's a shame he's giving out he wrong message. Yes Climate change is happening but as individuals we can make a difference in how we shop and eat.

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  12. The only thing that would help stop future food shortages and at the same time help with climate change is if we fed people, rather than feeding animals who the get turned into food to feed people. It takes a heck of a lot of grain and water to feed cattle to make burgers AND causes mass deforestation.

    I like that your dialogue with James stayed respectful, even with such a difference of opinion 😊

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    1. There are many animals that feed on marginal land that manage it in the best way possible. Like I've said above, I think we'd need to switch from an agrarian system to a horticultural one to come near to self sufficiency in this country. They did it in cuba.

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  13. Love it - I was following this discussion on James' page, then my friend sent me a link and said I'd like your site and hey presto, it's you! I love James Wong, have very much enjoyed his TED talk at Brighton in 2015, but am very much with you on retaining the right to disagree with him on occasion. I also don't understand the current shortage given how much of our salad produce comes from hydroponic systems in Spain and the Netherlands, unless the polytunnels and glasshouses are flooded?

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    1. Glad you like the blog, I just think that some level of food security is really important so slowly changing eating habbits is an important way to do that. food grown hydroponically and grown under glass/plastic would be much better protected you'd think so I'm not sure what's been going on over there. It would be interesting to go and see. I know that the area we're talking about is vast, I wonder if a larger variety of plants being grown would have helped prevent the shortage over there.

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  14. Growing your own and preserving it (root cellar, freezer, pantry), eating in season and supporting local in season growers is the only thing that makes sense if you're speaking of food security. In the summer, we eat huge salads every single day. I broke down last week and bought a package of mixed salad greens at our local organic co-op. They had no taste, and turned ishy within two days. Back to crunchy cabbage slaw from the root cellar.

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    1. In the UK the average garden is far too small (there's no average sized city lots like there is in the states) so it's not an option for everyone, but if more people started to support more local farmers and market gardeners then the supply would fill the demand.
      As for out of season veg my girls even turn their noises up at supermarket tomatoes.

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  15. I have an allotment (in SE of UK) and for most of the year my family eats only what I can grow. So everything is seasonal or used from the freezer.
    However, most of the people I know have no intention of eating this way. They buy whatever food they fancy without regard for season or food miles. Consequently, food growing is a massive profit driven industry rather than a food security industry.
    I grasped from his replies, that James Wong is viewing food security from the point of view of supplying what people will actually choose to buy, rather than a more prosaic supply of perfectly good, seasonal, 'functional' food.

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    1. Yeah, I think he has made some good points. My worry is that his attitude towards it making no difference is a dangerous one. If we start switching over to seasonal and local food then supply will fill the demand, market gardens could flourish again.
      I think that we also expect food far too cheaply, especially when we compare what our ancestors would have been paying for food. Pay more, but buy it from the local community and the money will get spent local as well, not a share holder in site!

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    2. As much as I love the idea of the majority of food being locally produced, I suspect the food growing industry is already so dominated by huge international land owners/growers with their centralised distribution centres (often in Spain/Netherlands - so it can be grown here on internationally owned farms but then goes to these European centres to be redistributed back here to supermarkets) that we are already too far down the road for most people to get most of their food from a market garden system.
      I agree with you about the price of food, but suspect ultimately the majority of people will choose lower priced food, such as that from these international giant food producers, over local production which will always be more expensive. Some of us will try & support local suppliers, grow our own, eat seasonal 'local' crops etc, but the masses will be fed from industrial production & so any problems such as weather disrupting crops have huge effects on the amount of food produced.

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