Monday, August 24, 2009

Locavores: Closer to Home

Is it colonial mentality that enables us to judge that imported is always better? Nowadays, the rule is imported is cheaper, especially if it came from India, China or Vietnam. But if we are told that a product came from Australia, New Zealand or Brazil, we might think otherwise, it might be better??? Where it came from is a relative term, how it came about is what matters.

When I think of Beef and Brazil combined, I think about the destruction of the Amazon Rainforest which leads to habitat loss of endemic species and loss of biodiversity and analyzing its impact further it will lead to climate change. In the Philippines, it is still not mainstream knowledge, but globally it is quite a concern and efforts by Brazil to claim sustainability in the cattle ranching industry is often criticized for being too greenwashed. The funny thing however for this case is the burger joint is not aware that it is proclaiming support against sustainable development. The truth is Beef from Brazil is Cheap and outsourcing beef from Brazil minimizes a burger joint's operating costs.

The globally expansive supply chain of the fast food is the reason why it is unsustainable. I once wrote that McDonald's insistence on the use of trawled Alaskan Pollack for its fillet-o-fish (even its insistence on carrying the Fillet-O-Fish in countries with little or no demand) not only causes impacts on the Bering Sea but also foregone benefits are accrued due to its failure to consider outsourcing fish from local aquaculture development in developing countries. It is only recently that I encountered the term locavore. If a carnivore eats meat, a herbivore eats plants, then a locavore eats local. Is localization an option for fastfood giants? However, this joint is closer to home.


Anonymous said...

Ayan pwede na mag-comment...referring to Jollibee right?

Maraida Santos said...

Most fastfoods outsource their beef from Brazil, since its the cheapest place to get it, it is slightly more sustainable if it is outsourced from New Zealand or even Argentina.