Political turmoil can follow you into the kitchen

It seems there is no escaping politics in today’s world. Even if you try to escape by retreating into the kitchen to do some cooking and baking, political issues can still creep in. Food and agriculture are playing huge roles in global trade disputes, which show no signs of relenting. 

The argument over a revision of NAFTA, the free-trade agreement between the US, Canada, and Mexico, could hinge on Canadian price supports for its dairy industry, for example. Many grain farmers in the US are teetering on the edge of bankruptcy due to low prices caused by reciprocal tariffs imposed by China, which is the single largest importer of US grains like soybeans and corn. 


It’s not just North American food items that are at issue. In the UK, the government has appointed a minister to oversee the protection of food supplies due to concerns about a no-deal Brexitt throwing the food supply chain into disarray. Delays at the border could cripple the ability of producers to transport highly perishable foods.

Of course, there are many pressing food issues in other countries such as severe food shortages due to conflict, governmental instability, rampant inflation, or even natural disasters. But for food lovers in the US, UK, and Canada, these types of perils were unimaginable only a few months ago. Since these countries are such large players on the world stage, ripple effects will be felt around the world. 

It makes the kitchen less of an escape portal than it used to be, although I still find solace there even if the price of butter is escalating. Let’s just hope that the butter will continue to be available, and take comfort in the fact that cookbooks have yet to be affected by political crises. 

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