Production and Markets
Notes and Case Study Geography HL
At times of increasing global pressure on food production and markets, countries are concerned to ensure food security, while keeping an eye on the price of this security. When many countries are no-longer self-sufficient in food, TNC’s play an important role in our daily experience of food, and spend billions on marketing to ensure that they remain in an important presence in our lives. Every day food is move in huge quantities around the world.
There are numerous strict EU standards for imported food products, including hygiene and health standards as well as regulations for size, form and colour of a certain product. While these regulations are supposed to protect European consumers, they can have devastating impacts on small farmers in export countries. These standards have prompted many stories in some newspapers who are concerned at the apparent silliness of some of the standards, which have been relaxed in recent years after concerns over food waste that they were partly to blame for.
These regulations may have serious consequences for some producers elsewhere. In Morocco for instance, a report suggested that in one year’s crop, around 40% of the tomatoes that had been cultivated to be exported to Europe failed to meet the European standards. Instead of being shipped abroad, the tomatoes were sold cheaply on Moroccan markets. Small local farmers have a hard tmr competing with the cheap produce and struggle to survive. Such a practice is sometimes called ‘food dumping’ and can be an unintended consequence of food aid.
Trade barriers are often put in place around specific countries or areas. These barriers are not necessarily ‘physical’ barriers, although they may be in some circumstances due to the nature of the relationship with surrounding countries. Some physical barriers would include the restrictions facing some contested areas of the Middle East, or enclaves within countries.
Trade barriers include tariffs (additional charges) and quotas (limits on hat can be imported or exported).
One problem that faces farmers wanting to import their products into the EU is the restrictions. They have to meet certain standards, some of which are not based on the taste or quality of the food, but its physical dimensions. There have also been examples of products having to undergo inspections which delay its arrival on the market. which may mean it is not competitive in price.
Sometimes barrios are put up for political reasons, at other times they may to protect consumers. Russian food important standards were raised after the country became a favoured ‘dumping ground’ for meat and fish products produced by EU countries that had failed to meet EU standards for sale within the EU.
Agriculture is an industry that has often required financial support, particularly given the globalised nature of the world, and the material flows of food around the world.
In the European Union, there has been history of additional investment. In many parts of…