Present......another country is in a food crisis - Venezuela. Once again, the hardest hit is the urban population. The circumstances in Venezuela are different than Cuba's, and the rural situation is not the same, but the bottom line is that not enough local food is being produced. People are not getting enough to eat. I don't know if the city residents are trying to grow their own food, though I've read that some urban plots are being developed for food gardens.....but at a very slow pace. Lack of knowledge? Lack of resources? Or some other factors? I'm getting the impression that severe hunger, especially among the poor, is at a serious level.
Hawaii.....a state who has put itself into a precarious situation. It relies extremely heavily upon imported food. If some crisis would stop or significantly curtail the daily import of food, Hawaii's residents would quickly become hungry. How quickly could locally grown food meet the need? Could the general population grow home gardens? Would they have the knowledge and resources? How quickly could enough food be had to prevent mass severe hunger or even starvation?
In the United States there has been quite a silent, and not so silent, movement that curtails people from growing local food.
...home associations and town restrictions on vegetable gardens and small livestock within the community boundaries
...zoning ordinances restricting livestock, even in rural zones
...regulations per water use and harvesting
...regulations per manure use, and even newly created regulations governing compost use
...regulations controlling the sale and distribution of food
As long as society is stable, all this regulation seems just fine and is usually welcomed by the general populous. Stability is the keyword.
If Hawaii, or the USA, is suddenly faced with a crisis, will there be enough food available? I'm seeing some people and organizations asking that question. If the population needs to turn to home gardens and small farms, will the knowledge and resources be there? Will officials try to continue to enforce their restrictive regulations?
I have no answers or solutions for the big picture. I feel that I can only look at my own farm, my own small community. But I do feel the general population should at least acquire the knowledge of how to grow food for their family. I look at the examples of Cuba and Venezuela. I look at war damaged countries of the world today. I see that access to gasoline, fertilizer, agricultural chemicals, seeds, livestock feed, and veterinary medicine becomes a real problem, and are often unaffordable or unavailable. Could American food growers continue to produce food and distribute it? Could the common man grow enough food to eat? How many will go hungry?
Honestly, I try not to think about this stuff too deeply, though I'm quite aware of the problem. It would just drive me insane because there's not much I could do about it. There already have been lots of warnings about the possibilities. But people and officials in general are not heeding the warnings. Historically, that has always been the case.