The rapid changes that we witness every day in the world are well-documented, but I remain constantly intrigued by them.
Over recent weeks I’ve been doing the ‘conference circuit’, where speaker after speaker has described developments taking place in the fresh produce sector. I wish that I had written down all the details and statistics that the presenters served up, but I confess that I after a while I was suffering from sheer ‘information overload’. Several developments nonetheless made an impression on me.
New varieties of fruit and vegetables continually stream out from nurseries and seed companies. One speaker told us how his company’s researchers had tackled the stubborn problem of tasteless tomatoes found in early hybrids. He explained how they now had varieties with improved taste – just like the tomatoes in the old days. Here’s an example of change going full circle!
When it came to a presentation on global warming by one of this country’s top authorities on the subject, the mood became more sombre.
The evidence supporting global warming is overwhelming and sometimes confusing to those of us not fully conversant with the subject. Overpopulation of the planet is a major contributor, and when I heard that every four days one million new souls join the planet I sat up in alarm.
Rising to the challenge
With food production areas decreasing rapidly as urbanisation and polluted natural resources increase, who is going to feed all these people? This is where agriculture steps into the breach. Our sector has a massive challenge on its hands – hence my excitement when listening to experts talk of all the new developments taking place in the fresh produce sector. I have no doubt that our farmers will rise to the challenge.
Finally, I was pleased to see an increased number of market agents at these conferences, many of whom were younger members of the fraternity. Now that’s positive change!
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