Marketplace Morning Report, May 7-9, 2008

May 7,

Commentary from Missouri farmer Richard Oswald, who talks about the upside of the food crisis for small farmers like himself.

May 8,

Food Sovereignty – by Reed Lindsay

Rice was once a luxury food in Haiti. Then, the United States and WTO forced the country to reduce its tariffs, and Haiti was flooded with cheap U.S.-subsidized rice, which everyone ate, and abandoned traditional foods. When rice prices soared, riots followed. Imported rice had killed domestic food production.

Going Nuts – by Josephine Bennett

China, a leading exporter of peanuts, is hoarding its entire crop for domestic use this year. Now, American farmers are expected to plant an additional 20% for importing regions like Japan, Mexico and Europe.

May 9,

Missing Ingredients - by Sam Eaton

All Recipes, the largest online cooking community, says traffic to recipes using low-cost ingredients such as ground beef and pasta nearly doubled in three months. Searches for low-cost recipes increased 74%.

Ripple Effect – by Stacey Vanek-Smith

People who grow their own vegetables spend more on seeds, tools, plants and fertilizer. The trend is up, but can the savings be sustained?

Marketplace, May 7-9, 2008

May 7,

Food Pangs – by Scott Tong

The long-term, slow-motion crisis driven by China. Its middle class is vastly raising demand for protein, when the country is already short of arable land, is losing more to urbanization, and is running out of water. So, just as China recently became a net importer of coal and oil, it will soon be importing vast quantities of soybeans, corn and wheat.

May 8,

Food Cartel – by Sarah Gardner

Agribusiness giant Cargill just reported an 86% jump in quarterly earnings, largely from its operations that buy, process and distribute farm commodities. Cargill is one of a handful of companies that dominate commodity processing around the world.

May 9,

New Face of Hunger – by Sean Cole and Gretchen Wilson

Whole new classes of people are facing hunger for the first time. Marketplace starts in the United States, where there have been runs on food pantries, then takes us to South Africa, where families spend 40% of their incomes on food, cutting back on other expenses such as health care and education.

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