Food Supply Case Studies

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Key Case Studies


1.    Food Security

Blue tongue disease

·         This spread in Europe in 2006 and into the UK in 2008

·         It affected cattle, goats, deer, but mostly sheep

·         It had various symptoms including a blue tongue, but it meant that the animals were no longer fit for product consumption

·         20km control zones were set up around all of the affected areas

·         Vaccines were created so stop the spread of disease

·         It meant that there was a deficit of milk and meats in the UK for a while as the animals could not be sold for consumption, further meaning that farmers lost a lot of their livestock.

Foot and Mouth

·         This was a disease that was spread in 2007

·         A 10km control zone was created round affected farms

·         This affected sheep and cattle, which had to be killed and burnt to stop the spreading of the disease.

·         Surveillance was set up on affected areas and bans were brought about on transportation of any kind introduced

·         This meant that farms in the UK could not fully meet the demand for milk, lamb and beef. It also meant that unpleasant piles of burning dead animals were left everywhere.

The UN 8 Millennium development goals that apply to food security

Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger

Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability

There are others but do not link to food security

2.    Geopolitics

The French Trade War: This was a ‘war’ between France and the USA which set off due to the French banning hormone induced beef in the country which meant that American farmers did not get as much income, this caused USA to retaliate by banning several French products including their cheese.

The EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP): This involves the better trading links in the EU which meant that things needed to be introduced-

·         Import tariffs for non-EU countries

·         Guaranteed prices for food

·         Subsides for good production and exports

·         Investment grants are given to farmers to turn from subsistence farming to commercial farming.

3.    Food production systems




Arable Subsidence

Rice Farming Ganges Valley, India

Wheat/Corn Nebraska, American Prairies, USA

Arable Commercial

Greenhouse Horticulture, UK Norfolk

Shift Cultivation, Amazon Rainforest

Pastoral Subsidence

Crofting (Tennant Farming) Scottish Highlands

Cattle Ranching, Queensland, Australia

Pastoral Commercial

Factory farmed Pigs. UK EG Lincolnshire

Nomadic herding, North Africa


Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)

Original Aims of CAP

·         Increase the food


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