Posts Tagged ‘South Korea’
Looks like it’s time to do an update of the future of food. Increasingly more agricultural lands in poorer nations are being leased or bought up by developing nations facing a food crunch domestically. Spanish NGO GRAIN has published a list of ‘land grabbers’ and their activities here. You can get the large map as a download.
China’s land buys are close to its domestic market, more of a food supply security play. China is also buying land in Africa, and sending farmers there, so we might see China’s footprint in Africa increasing in the future? Japan’s land buys are more directed along her food traders. But S Korea is the eye popper here, operating stealthily, buying up more land than China, and being the largest land buyer so far.
In Singapore’s perspective, we do not have large-scale food traders like Japan’s Itochu, Sumitomo etc that can move up the value chain and own large tracts of land in China etc. Neither do we have large-scale plantation owners like the Wilmars of the world. Yet we sit close to some of the world’s most fertile and yet agriculturally unproductive lands. Money itself is not enough. Land itself is not enough. Management best-in-class practices is needed. Technology itself as I said in earlier posts is tempting but also not enough. It is the mixture of all four.
Update (8 Jan 09): Long overdue, here’s a clever graphic show of the Future of Food from Wired Magazine.
I’ve walked to the edge and back many times on how and whether to approach the issue of future of faith, or marketplace of meaning, or some other variation of the same theme. The rapid evangelisation of S Korea, and the eventual domination of S Korea business, politics etc by several megachurches is worth projecting out towards a possible future of China, as it will be the world’s largest Christian nation within our lifetimes. Would it be more like the Taiwanese way … meaning a foreign missionary transmission and hence still more elitist and less the bedrock of modern Taiwanese society … or like S Korea where it was an important anti-feudal movement against the old, against Japanese colonization etc and morphed into a home grown uniquely S Korean religion?
Of course, Buddhism has borrowed ‘best business practices’ from the pentecostal churches and we see that in the mega Buddhist corporations in Taiwan where, like the megachurches, they own satellite TV stations, malls, hospitals etc Religions do adapt in the marketplace. I have ordered the IPS study on what is happening in Singapore and look forward to reading it.
But for now, here’s a fun flash on how the geography of religion evolved over the centuries, you can see 5,000 years of religion in 90 seconds. Click here to see.