Bad peanut crops may lead to peanut butter shortage

Some bad weather this last summer, droughts, floods, coupled with less acreage in favor of corn is about to yield the worst peanut crop in recent history, some numbers point to 13% less peanuts than last year. Why are Americans decreasing acreage to peanuts in favor of corn and cotton? Well, cotton sells better and for more, and the US Federal Government has been subsidizing corn crops because they want to use the corn to manufacture ethanol, used to cut automotive fuel, as well as biodiesel.

On the one hand, using 10% or more ethanol in auto fuel does increase the overall amount of available gasoline and should lower gas prices. But in reality it doesn’t lower anything. In fact, gas prices have been steadily raising for the last 5 years. Sadly, the price of food is also on the rise, not only because transporting this food (usually by truck) from the farm, to the grocery store, to your table has gotten more expensive, but also there is less food available because up to 25% of some crops, are dedicated to something else than food: Ethanol.

Boy, one day, anthropologists will look back on this and wonder what kind of kooks were our leaders, when instead of growing crops to supply ourselves with food, we grew crops to supply biofuel.

Real smart, in a minimalist kind of way.

Science and Tech

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