Global and National Food Security in a Post-Covid World w/ Mike Callicrate and Ved Seereeram
A Story Club: Global Politics S2 E1
streamed live on FB from the US (San Francisco), India (Dehra Dun) and Trinidad and Tobago in the Caribbean, Thursdays 12pm EDT | 9am PDT | 9:30pm IST
repeated Friday on the UNC Network in Trinidad and Tobago 6pm AST
Welcome to Season 2 Episode 1 of A Story Club: Global Politics & Cultures brought to you by Bulletproof Podcast Formula.
This is a unique venture, streaming simulataneously from Trinidad and Tobago in the Caribbean, Dehra Dun in India, and San Franciso in the United States.
We speak with people around the world, trying to understand different issues and problems relevant to my own country, Trinidad and Tobago, and also to people in sometimes very similar and sometimes very different situations, cultures, histories, politics, sociology, etc.
The goal is to learn from each other, build networks, widen our perspectives, and work for solutions while remaining grounded in our distinctive contexts.
Today’s episode is titled, "Global and National Food Security in a Post-Covid World"
During this covid crisis, it is said that we are all in the same boat. Unfortunately, this is not true: we are all only in the same storm. Some have yachts, others have rafts, and others are drowning.
The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) currently puts the number of people at risk of starvation at more than 270 million. This is double the pre-pandemic figure. The COVID crisis has greatly exacerbated the situation for those already suffering from poverty, armed conflict, and other material insecurity.
While we track the 12,000+ global daily deaths from coronavirus, we have ignored the 20,000+ globaly daily deaths from hunger that have been deepened by the covid lockdowns.
Global food supply chains have been disrupted, as well as the global production and distribution of food. Food security is a major issue.
What does this mean for food self-sufficiency? For farmer security? The relative roles of large corporate agriculture and smaller family farms? Food exports and food imports?
Today I am honoured to have as my guests Mike Callicrate and Ved Seereeram.
Mike Callicrate is an independent cattle producer, business entrepreneur and political activist from Boulder, CO, USA. Mike is a founding member of several farm advocacy groups including the Organization for Competitive Markets, R-CALF and the Kansas Cattlemen’s Association. He also was a lead plaintiff in a class action lawsuit against the world’s largest meatpacker, IBP, now part of Tyson Foods, alleging unfair and discriminatory marketing practices.
Mike has been an advisor for the films Food Inc. and FRESH, and is cited in several books including The Omnivore’s Dilemma and Fast Food Nation. He is revered as the “go-to expert” for understanding negative consequences of trends in the modern meat industry.
Ved Seereeram is owner of Inverness Sugar Estates, and a former banking executive and financial consultant, from Trinidad and Tobago. Ved worked with Citibank for 8 years and was Managing Director of Citicorp Merchant Bank, before he called them out for banking fraud in the early 2000s, and was featured in Time magazine.
Ved has since served in the Senate of Trinidad and Tobago and on several State Boards. He now owns and runs a small sugar estate which produces pancake syrup, muscovado sugar and jaggery/panela, and is very interested in issues of agriculture and social, economic and environmental sustainability.