The Greek Potato Revolution
Greek 'Potato Revolution' Spreads - economic hardship relocalises food supply
Austerity measures have led to what is being called the Greek 'Potato Revolution'. As incomes fall and retail prices rise, Greeks are cutting out the middle man, paying up to three times less than they usually would for potatoes and buying them straight from the farmers themselves. Is this a precursor of transition culture and does it point towards people adopting, as we would say in permaculture, more beneficial relationships? This report from France's Observers network makes for exciting reading.
In the Greek town of Katerini the Pieria Volunteer Action Team set up a website which encourages people to order potatoes directly from local farmers. The farmers get to sell their potatoes for a higher price than they would to distributors – but for less than what supermarkets charge customers – so both farmers and customers win. Other Greek cities are following the scheme, the demand is huge and olive oil, olives, meat, wheat and rice are set to be the next produce made available.
It is a fast moving story and has led to supermarkets slashing their prices. Read the full article and comments here: http://observers.france24.com/content/20120307-potato-revolution-greeks-start-buying-potatoes-straight-farmers-supermarkets-produce-katerini-thessaloniki
The Greek version of Patrick Whitefield's Permaculture In A Nutshell is available from the Greek group Dromi Synthesis, if you are in Greece do visit their website and make contact with them.
We would love to hear from you if you are encouraging such schemes elsewhere in the UK or Europe.