Food Security and the part it will play in our future.
I am often asked why Sefuty? and have explained that is standing for food security – se and ty = the security bit and fu = food. Why food security as a title for a series? Well, it started as a short story, as I have said before, but when I realised it was going to be long and I had to find a title for it Sefuty sounded about right. The whole premise of this world I created, the earth in the near future, 2100s, is about the effect extreme climate change has on food supplies.
The world goes to war over the resources needed for life. We may think it will be fossil fuel shortages that will cause our downfall, and so it will but not so much because we cannot heat or cool our homes or drive our cars, but because food production globally is tied so tightly into intricate knots with fossil fuel/technology. The global population will crash if anything cuts the knots. We cannot feed 6-9billion people without technology.
I have been interested for many years now over feeding the world. Food is of interest to me. I have travelled widely and enjoyed the different cultures and been intrigued as to how closely bound each is to its own food stuff. To the extent that some, that are starving, will not eat a food offered if it is not culturally theirs. Who will eat a live insect? Well I hope I would, if I was starving, but the taboos are hard to break through. Eat human flesh? (if dead of course!) many will not, even to save themselves from the same fate. To be able to overcome the bodies natural instinct for self survival needs a mighty strong force. That something as basic as food can do this I found fascinating. The other side of the coin is that since mankind began we have been lusting after ‘other’s’ foodstuffs. Global trade began very early. We are complex and odd creatures.
I have read extensively on and around the subject of food before, during and after taking a food science degree in my 40s. Enjoying the books on the history of trade, an extension on a life time interest in travel and foreign parts. Discovering those Neolithic traders (amazing folk they were). It became obvious that although trade helped to spread humanity around the world it also caused some horrific behaviour from Homo Sapiens. War, enslavement, torture being the worst. Because of course trade encouraged greed and don’t we all know why greed is quoted as a deadly sin!
Huge profits could be made, especially in foodstuffs – the spice wars were vicious and caused ethnic cleansing before the phrase had been invented, because the wealth to be made was tremendous – where there is rich profit there are speculators. Where there are rich profits there will be the exploited. The more I read over the years the more the patterns grew. The more convinced I became that we were repeating the pattern this time on a massive scale. Even back 40 years ago, I thought that the starving of the world would be what brings us to our knees. The poor, the discarded, those who have nothing left to lose. Now I see tensions rising and spilling over.
I want to present a short summary of our history in the next couple of blogs, showing what the pattern is like. Explain why the climate change behind The Sefuty Chronicles is about food more than it is about defunct air conditioning units.