Looking Forward to a Lifestyle Austere but Cheerful
1. Do we know who our Minister of Agriculture is and his full title? The fact that he approves of hunting and believes in killing badgers as part of a campaign against bTB is unsatisfactory for a modern society in a developing world which requires a general knowledge of the philosophy of food production and the wellbeing of a lot of people and animals (wild, feral and used for food) and for many aspects of the development of the sea, water and for the production of fuel and power.
2. It is not provided by a politician with doubtful views on things agricultural, from horsemeat, antibiotics in food and the adequacy of food for all populations rich and poor. Such were the experts that the Ministry called upon to guide it in the wartime period and post-war, as celebrated by Lord Boyd Orr and Sir Stafford Cripps.
3. Lord Boyd Orr eventually became the first Director General of the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation and was celebrated for his work on nutrition of starving populations and hungry children. Stafford Cripps, Chancellor of the Exchequer in Clement Attlee’s Cabinet also met Mahatma Gandhi in earlier years and following Partition and was famous for his work for good bread (brown, white or wholemeal) and many other health foods. He contributed a great deal of wisdom as Britain recovered from war.
4. The government at that time followed much of the advice proffered by these experts and the public were glad enough to accept them initially without demur. In fact Stafford Cripps was said to be the one Chancellor of the Exchequer that the nation applauded as an example of good agricultural practice at a time of better diets for consumers and industrial growth.
5. There was full agreement and acceptance of most of the advice and they were accepted with a good heart and welcomed by precepts of austere agriculture, setting a good example in their own lives. We now have disrupted agriculture and a nation divided with ill-thought out activities and wasteful pursuits.
6. So we should try to find some well-intentioned advisors for the Ministry of Agriculture such as Lord Boyd Orr and Stafford Cripps and as before, seek alternatives in modern contexts without purely commercial interests. One such person who comes to mind is ex-President Clinton, but if he turned the offer down, an alternative choice could be made in North America, Australia and in other countries where sunshine is at a premium, such as Scandinavia and Western Europe. This would be a bold move but one that if possible would be food for thought as well as for nutrition in a satisfied world.