Harvest2020 is a roadmap for the food and fisheries industry to grow food outputs and exports from Ireland between 2010 and 2020. Milk and Beef were specifically mentioned as areas for significant growth. Although financially lucrative for a relatively small number of farmers, DP believes that Harvest 2020 is short-sighted in terms of policy coherence. The global food system is broken – Industrial scale agriculture is simply not sustainable no matter what green wash is applied. Simply put, growth in milk and dairy exports comes at a significant and damaging cost in terms of CO2 emissions and does not deliver benefits for many. There are glaring contradictions between Sustainable Development as articulated through the Sustainable Development Goals and industrial scale food production as outlined in Harvest 2020. As a country, Ireland can’t work towards both simultaneously as they are paths in different directions.
However, the focus of this particular goal is “Zero Hunger” so let’s focus on that. The world has enough food. The real problem is how that food is distributed. The facilitators of the Harvest 2020 report (Harvard Business School) didn’t have “Zero Hunger” in mind when they were discussing Harvest 2020. They had profit and growth in mind and sadly profit and growth DO NOT lead to “Zero hunger”. We are calling on our new Government to re think their ideas of food production and security. We are urging them to take advantage of our wonderful marine resource in a sustainable manner as well as re scaling (Making smaller) our units of farming to ensure they become more sustainable. It’s time to satisfy our needs and not our greed. Enough is plenty.