IMF Presses World to Scrap Farm Subsidies – The world economy would gain an annual boost of 128 billion dollars if lavish farm subsidies were scrapped, the IMF said in a report. Industrialized nations spent more than 300 billion dollars last year on agricultural subsidies — six times the total government aid to developing countries, the International Monetary Fund noted. [Global Policy.org]
I find it amazing how much attention “Fair-Trade coffee”:96 manages to attract by people who practically ignore this larger issue. It must be the humanizing effect of having the mental image of a person as opposed to the larger academic debate. Combined with the feeling that ending subsidies will hurt farmers with the belief that buying Fair-Trade coffee simply helps everyone (except the distributers we’re trying to cut out) and I suppose we have our explanation.