Economic Tidbits


“The supply chains behind an iPhone, or a car component that crisscrosses the Rio Grande, are wonders of co-ordination. But the unsung star of 21st-century logistics is the global food system. From field to fork, it accounts for 10% of world GDP and employs perhaps 1.5bn people. The global supply of food has nearly tripled since 1970, as the population has doubled to 7.7bn. At the same time, they number of people who have too little to eat has fallen from 36% of the population to 11%, and a bushel of maize or cut of beef costs less today than 50 years ago in real terms. Food exports have grown sixfold over the past 30 years; four-fifths of people live in part on calories produced in another country. This happens in spite of governments, not because of them.” The Economist, Supply chains and the pandemic: the food miracle, May 9th, 2020.

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