29 October, 2020

The Unequal Fertility Cult

The farm subsidy regime in the West is as skewed as it is in India

The Unequal Fertility Cult
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
The rich nations' subsidy story has many Indian angles. One, these countries started giving food subsidies post-World War II, to ensure food security, just like India started its own payouts when the PL480 dried up. Second—VHP-ites take heart—most of the former's subsidies go to cows (dairy farming). The World Bank calculates that the average Japanese cow gets $7 a day, while the European one gets $2.20. And the OECD (rich nations' club) estimates that farmers in the West receive over $300 billion a year, or six times the level of assistance provided by rich nations to poor.

Some 40 per cent of farm income in Europe is now directly paid by Brussels; the corresponding figure for Japan is 75 per cent. Place this against the stark figure of half of global population (half of whom are in India) living on less than $2 a day. Or against the fact that agriculture accounts for only 1.6 per cent of Japan's economy, 2.9 per cent of France's and 1 per cent of Britain's.

Like in India, the western subsidies are iniquitous. The largest 2 per cent of Europe's farms receive 24...
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