Sunday, March 20, 2011

Japan battles food crisis

The Japan’s socio-economic structure was destroyed by the earthquake, tsunami and the nuke disaster. The thousands of people were died, millions of hearts were broken, dreams shattered, their lives distressed and still they are fighting with earthquakes and nuclear catastrophe. The terrible disaster brought horrific changes in people lives, they are moving miles together from their homes to shelters to defend from profound nuclear debacle. In the viewpoint of food, Japan is not self sufficient and 60% of its food requirements are fulfilled by the imports even though it has some domestic agriculture production. Now the country is in deep crisis in agriculture and food security by tsunami and ongoing nuclear catastrophe.

Rice is also an important food staple for Japanese and the most rice growing crop land (Miyagi prefecture) was destroyed by the tsunami. The Sendai region is suffering with extensive destruction of grain warehouses, fishing ports, food processing and livestock facilities. The second problem is ongoing nuclear radiation leakage in Fukushima nuclear plant (Fukushima prefecture), the nuclear plant radiation exposure may damage to humans, soil, land, agriculture, forests, fisheries and livestock. The government halted the sale of all foods from the farms near ruined nuclear plant since they found high level of radiation in milk and spinach. Some of the major ports were closed due to disaster that is also caused to disruption of food supplies and delays in shipments.

Japan’s food security is in critical point, Japan is one of the biggest food importers and it buys lot of wheat, corn and pork from USA, China and Australia. Japan may want to import more food to meet their demand since its own agriculture facilities are in turmoil and that could have a significant impact on worldwide grain prices. Indeed, the Japan shouldn’t face any food crisis, all nations should stand united and they need to take a global action on emerging food crisis in Japan. Some of the countries extended ban on grain exports to protect their population against the food shortages, but they should be generous and flexible towards crisis in Japan.

As per data 2009, 4 percent of the people in Japan are engaged in agriculture and the farm contribution is only 1 percent of their GDP. Japan should focus on self sufficient in food grains and huge investments must be required in agriculture and live stock production to prevent food vulnerability. I hope all developed nation and organizations will respond immediately with all kind of necessities and technical assistance to reinstate the Japan.We wish that Japan will be normal and emerge stronger than before.