Re-Planting of Rice
... if you imagine a sort of hourglass, at the top there are the millions of farmers who grow the food that we eat, and at the bottom there are billions of us consumers, and in the middle there are just a handful of corporations that mediate between the people who grow our food and us. And those corporations, in many cases -- it's usually four corporations controlling more than 50 percent of the market. I mean, in tea, for example, one company, Unilever, controls 90 percent of the market.
Now, when you're in that position of market power, you're able to do a great deal. First, you're able to drive prices down for farmers. And of course the irony there is that farmers and farm workers are the poorest people on the planet. So you're paying the poorest people on the planet the least. And then you're processing the food so that what we end up with is food that is rich in salts and fats and sugars, food that tends to make us want to buy more, food that makes us obese. And that's why you're having a situation where there are six billion people in the world, a billion of whom are now overweight.