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The Famine Thread

Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby theluckycountry » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 09:41:48

Tuike wrote:FAO food price index rising fast! Hunger riots on the way?


Not here in the Lucky Country. Eye fillet steak "beef tenderloin" can still be bought for under $20 a kilo in bulk cryovac packs, that's under $10 a lb. And lamb, tasty tasty grass fed lamb for a lot less. Population density is the key. Most nations are too overpopulated, ripe for Jay Hanson's dieoff. If I lived in the US and wanted a secure future I'd buy a couple of hundred acres of good grazing land and raise beef cattle.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Pops » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 11:42:07

theluckycountry wrote:
Tuike wrote:FAO food price index rising fast! Hunger riots on the way?


Not here in the Lucky Country. Eye fillet steak "beef tenderloin" can still be bought for under $20 a kilo in bulk cryovac packs, that's under $10 a lb. And lamb, tasty tasty grass fed lamb for a lot less. Population density is the key. Most nations are too overpopulated, ripe for Jay Hanson's dieoff. If I lived in the US and wanted a secure future I'd buy a couple of hundred acres of good grazing land and raise beef cattle.

I've been looking, not much available for less than $5-8k per acre in small portions, even in Missouri. I'd say easily double from 5 years ago—my plan to flip a few houses to build capital and custom build a place backfired on me... at least I have cash, now that we have inflation. :|

Again it is a case of allocation and opportunity cost, if a person really believed starvation was on the way then yes, a patch of grass is perfect. In mid and south Missouri the weather pretty good, typically plenty of rain, and you can grow a variety of things on the best plots—good that is when it isn't trying to kill you. But you need a minimum amount even to raise a milker and calf along with some potatoes. Maybe 10 acres to allow for rotation and some redundancy. So $80k if you can find one. Plus improvements: fencing, well at least, septic if you are gonna stay any length of time, propane tank & power or some PV/batteries/etc. Unless you have experience you probably need to practice making food so you are gonna want at least a 1968 pink 8-wide on blocks and some way to commute to work, unless you work at home.

So $150k-ish. Me I'm ready, I just can't find much.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Doly » Fri 31 Dec 2021, 15:39:51

Population density is the key.


To be precise, population density relative to the agricultural output of the country, and agricultural output depends on variables like available water. If I lived in a country that regularly suffers from serious droughts, I wouldn't be entirely relaxed about avoiding famine. There is a lot that a country with plenty of rainfall can do to improve agricultural output. But if there are droughts, the options are a lot less. Cheap desalination does not exist yet.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Pops » Wed 02 Feb 2022, 13:34:30

Fertilizer Daily
Russia stops the export of ammonium nitrate
Today, deliveries of ammonium nitrate abroad from Russia are stopped: the government has imposed a two-month ban on them.

“From February 2, a two-month ban on the export of ammonium nitrate comes into force. The corresponding government decree has been signed,” its statement told.

This decision was made to provide domestic farmers with mineral fertilizers for spring field work. An additional need for them arose in a number of regions of the country, in particular, in the North Caucasian and Southern federal districts.

“This is a temporary measure, the remaining volume can be exported from April 2, when Russian enterprises will receive ammonium nitrate in the required volume, and the demand for it in the domestic market will peak,” said First Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov.


Russia is the #1 nitrogen fertilizer exporter.

h/t RATIONALLUDDITE @ POB

Probably a better thread for this if it matters
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Wed 02 Feb 2022, 14:55:42

Pops,

Thanks for the above.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Pops » Thu 03 Feb 2022, 08:43:56

Looking for a little context, here are current N prices

Image

That works out to a little under a buck per pound of N and some can use can use 200 pounds per acre of grain. Prices were also high back in the oughts when there was shortage of all things fossil, but we're Saudi America now, what gives?

I also stumbled across a story that may or may not be related, the commerce dept declared russia and Tobago have been dumping fertilizer in the US causing unfair competition with domestic producers. Next will be tariffs that will raise prices further.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby theluckycountry » Thu 03 Feb 2022, 11:06:20

Pops wrote:I've been looking, not much available for less than $5-8k per acre in small portions, even in Missouri. I'd say easily double from 5 years ago—my plan to flip a few houses to build capital and custom build a place backfired on me... at least I have cash, now that we have inflation.


Well that's one way, but I've lived on the land and it's hard work and no real holidays, it's why a lot of old farmers sell up and move to the coast in retirement. I have savings set aside in various vehicles and intend to simply buy or trade what I need if food gets scarce. There is a lot of delusion, especially in the prepper circles, that owning a retreat with you own food supply is the way to go. But history proves that if the government doesn't step in and steal most of it, or the hungry hoards don't descend like locusts, then the prices you can actually get for you excess make the whole thing a slog.

Like in Germany and the Ukraine, and elsewhere in the 20th century famines. It was bad for the people in the city with no means but equally bad for many farmers. I'm not saying it can't work, I just ran the numbers and figured it was all too hard without 4 strong sons living with me. Plus it might not come to those dire straights and then I would have wasted my retirement years grubbing in the dirt and fending off thieves for no reason. Good luck either way pops.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Fri 04 Feb 2022, 08:48:28

There is a book “Taste of War” that goes into some detail about how price controls screw things up for everyone. It looked at price controls in the low countries and found where prices were unrestrained farmers produced food and it made its way into the cities. Where there were price controls the farmers produced the minimum possible, total production fell and the cities suffered.

The farmers were aware of the hardship they had from the authorities and fought against it, even at the expense of their fellow citizens.

The same thing occurred in the India famines when governments intervened in free trade. The sight famine in one state caused other states to forbid exportation. Regulation broke the supply chain.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 04 Feb 2022, 13:01:06

Newfie wrote:There is a book “Taste of War” that goes into some detail about how price controls screw things up for everyone. It looked at price controls in the low countries and found where prices were unrestrained farmers produced food and it made its way into the cities. Where there were price controls the farmers produced the minimum possible, total production fell and the cities suffered.

The farmers were aware of the hardship they had from the authorities and fought against it, even at the expense of their fellow citizens.

The same thing occurred in the India famines when governments intervened in free trade. The sight famine in one state caused other states to forbid exportation. Regulation broke the supply chain.


A not dissimilar thing took place in Ireland during the potato famine. Absentee landlords grew grain and exported it to the UK despite the fact that the Potato blight wiped out the subsistence crops for the majority of the population and left them to starve. It was not 'government policy' but the policy of the elites of the culture but the end result was those considered unimportant to the people in charge were the ones who suffered the worst.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby theluckycountry » Wed 09 Feb 2022, 19:52:43

Tanada wrote:
A not dissimilar thing took place in Ireland during the potato famine. Absentee landlords grew grain and exported it to the UK despite the fact that the Potato blight wiped out the subsistence crops for the majority of the population and left them to starve.


They should have just stolen the crop and fed themselves. Then when they were caught they'd have been deported to Australia and their dependents would be living in the lap of luxury now.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby AdamB » Thu 10 Feb 2022, 13:23:56

theluckycountry wrote:
Tanada wrote:
A not dissimilar thing took place in Ireland during the potato famine. Absentee landlords grew grain and exported it to the UK despite the fact that the Potato blight wiped out the subsistence crops for the majority of the population and left them to starve.


They should have just stolen the crop and fed themselves. Then when they were caught they'd have been deported to Australia and their dependents would be living in the lap of luxury now.


Except for the 1 in 8 adults, or 1 in 6 children anyway. Maybe just the banana benders have it good? The white ones anyway?

As a result, more than 3.24 million Australians live below the poverty line, including 774,000 children under the age of 15. This is one in eight adults, and one in six children who are struggling to survive.Link.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby theluckycountry » Thu 10 Feb 2022, 16:55:19

Newfie wrote:There is a book “Taste of War” that goes into some detail about how price controls screw things up for everyone.


Most things governments do screw things up for everyone.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Tuike » Sat 12 Mar 2022, 14:02:03

Lintila: War in Ukraine could nearly double food prices in Finland -yle
People in Finland must be prepared for wartime pricing of products and services, Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintila (Cen) said in an Yle interview on Saturday. He warned that the price tag for a standard basket of groceries could nearly double, partly due to knock-on effects from steep increases in fuel and fertiliser prices. "The price of food will rise. If 11 percent of people's income now goes to food, it will rise to more than 20 percent," predicted Lintila. "We have a major challenge in that the agricultural situation is already critical. We need a support package for agriculture for the sake of food security," said Lintila, whose Centre Party has traditional ties to the farmers' union.

There was also talk of Europe wide food crisis.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Doly » Sat 12 Mar 2022, 14:43:25

Most things governments do screw things up for everyone.


There is always going to be someone in power. If you don't like the government, try looking at places that are run by a bunch of oligarchs chosen just for their ability to get rich, or where there's pretty much anarchy. I'd rather have some sort of government that seems reasonably legitimate. Though I realise that "reasonably legitimate government" is something in very short supply these days. Maybe it's because most governments have no idea what they're doing these days.

Sometimes I wonder if the reason that politics has gone so screwy in most places and it looks like politicians have lost their minds, is because their minds were never in their heads to start with. What I mean is, maybe they just know a bunch of tricks that used to work in the past, but they aren't working any more, and they don't know why. Maybe what kept them in power is that they knew how to keep going the things that got them elected, like the Internet, TV, radio, press and so on, and they never realised that they were at the service of things, not people.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Pops » Sat 12 Mar 2022, 15:04:24

Azure Standard is a company out of Oregon that delivers bulk food to drop point around the US.

They sell lots of organic stuff but the main thing is they deliver in bulk making stocking up a little easier. I just ordered a couple of 50# sacks of red wheat berries, $35 each, I looked up what I paid before the pandemic and it was $25. So higher but not terrible yet.

I get buckets, mylar bags and O2 absorbers from Amazon, about $10 for each pack. This is also higher than what I paid last. Still a 5 gal bucket all sealed in Mylar gives about 35-40# of berries for $40. 1,500 calories x 40 is 60k or a month's worth for an adult. It ought to last 30 years anyway, if you don't eat it that is.

Of course you need a decent grinder unless you are going to eat a lot of sprouts. I stack buckets of soft and hard wheat, whole corn, lotta beans, lentils, peas, rolled oats. A few hundred bucks worth would keep your buckle off you backbone for a while.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Sat 12 Mar 2022, 15:15:41

“Governments” are made up of “leaders” and “institutions” or bureaucrats. In general Leaders come and go and push things in some direction. Opposing this are the innumerable bureaucrats that exist in all layers if government and large corporations including the church. They are the flywheel that resists change.

Bureaucrats are why we survive leaders like Trump. But they also have a cost, we loose agility. Good and bad.

The current market volatility will require new thinking and leadership to make rapid adjustments. Most famines occur despite sufficient food, because the logistics won’t allow distribution, because leaders impose export restrictions to assure they have enough at home, and because price controls deincentiveize production.

Our current world order will probably last linger than we think. But itmag alsi be poorer than than it has been.

Peak prosperity?
Peak globalization?
Peak supply chain?
Peak trust?
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby careinke » Sat 12 Mar 2022, 23:51:07

Home sized Freeze Dryer's have fallen to less than $3K and I am beginning my research. At the fruit club meeting the other night, one of the members said he visited friend who had one and was given multiple packages of different types of food, all were very good. Anyway he bought one in Portland for $2.6K (no sales tax), but had not set it up yet and would give a talk on it for us.

The smallest version, (what he bought), is still too big for a counter top, so you need a dedicated space. Also do not know how loud they are with the vacuum pump and all.

Our clan has multiple diets with celiac, keto, etc. It has a good chance of having a nice ROI. Lots of stuff to check out. Maybe there is even a market for renting them out.

When my kids finish their tiny home at the beach, they plan to move the family in, so they can completely tear apart and rebuild the kitchen, pantry, and deck on their "farm" house, which dates back to 1920's.

I'm looking forward to digging deeper. I'm confident my family will always have food although it may not be the same food some of them are used to.

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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby jedrider » Mon 14 Mar 2022, 14:52:50

China warns of 'worst in history' winter wheat crop
https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Agriculture/China-warns-of-worst-in-history-winter-wheat-crop

Although this should be offset by Russian wheat, no?
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 14 Mar 2022, 16:53:04

China will likely not starve, but may well prices other countries out if the market. The famine, if there is one, would likely hit Africa.
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Re: The Famine Thread

Unread postby Doly » Mon 14 Mar 2022, 17:16:48

Most famines occur despite sufficient food, because the logistics won’t allow distribution, because leaders impose export restrictions to assure they have enough at home, and because price controls deincentiveize production.


There are several possible reasons for a famine. The most obvious one is crop failure of some kind, leading to not enough food. There can be famines with enough food, especially if the food is only just about enough for the population with little surplus. In those cases, the most common problems are issues with food distribution, deliberate or grossly incompetent mishandling of food on the part of the authorities, and various types of market failures.
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