AP wire excerpts on food supply hearingsgreenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
Before our server goes down in about 3 minutes, let me post this too. FYI. --------------------- from:
--- Agriculture Secretary Glickman Optimistic On Y2K & Food Supply; Others More Cautious
(AP-Washington Post/AP-Y2K Today/AP-Alabama Live)
Senator Bennett's Y2K Committee held hearings on Y2K and the food supply today; linked above are two Associated Press reports (in three links, as I'll explain). Both stories deal with Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman's testimony.
The first link (Washington Post) goes to the most recent (ie, second) story, and includes details not seen in the original story (discussing contradictions to the positive view of that first story).
**``The basic foods Americans expect to be in their grocery stores will be there,'' Glickman told a Senate panel. ``An interruption in the food supply so severe as to threaten the well-being and basic comfort of the American public is highly unlikely.''
**Glickman further warned that consumers doing ``needless and frivolous stockpiling of supplies can create isolated shortages...''
**Still, one farm leader says disruption is very possible in a food network that is so interconnected.
**``We are dependent on so many people,'' said Ken Evans, president of the Arizona Farm Bureau. ``I've got to have the entire infrastructure from me until it gets to say, an inner city wife in Philadelphia.''
**For instance, farmers are especially dependent on telecommunications to do everything from ordering supplies to scheduling shipments, Evans said. ``We are particularly vulnerable because of our remoteness and the lack of technical support in many rural communities...''
**One area of concern is the readiness of U.S. trade partners. The United States imports about 40 percent of its fruit, mostly bananas, and 60 percent of its seafood...
**U.S. officials also stressed that the nation's food system is extremely reliant on the readiness of other areas such as transportation and utilities.
The other two links are two locations for the first AP story to come out on the hearings today. I included two links because I'm not sure if both or either will stay active. This story had a more upbeat outlook on the situation, because it was released before the hearings with Glickman's prepared remarks, and so did not include subsequent testimony. Even though it is older than the story I excerpted above, I thought it was worth the links, because it includes a few other details that story does not:
**Glickman said some exporting countries are failing to prepare for the problem, which could result in short-term disruptions of mostly perishable fruits and vegetables.
**"Should there be a disruption of imports, domestically grown fresh fruits and vegetables will continue to be available, although with less variety and possibly at somewhat higher prices than usual," he said.
-- Drew Parkhill/CBN News (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 05, 1999
Thanks Drew, I thought the way glickman phrased this statement was interesting.
"**``The basic foods Americans expect to be in their grocery stores will be there,'' Glickman told a Senate panel. ``An interruption in the food supply so severe as to threaten the well-being and basic comfort of the American public is highly unlikely.'' "
He didn't say inconceivable, impossible, out of the question or just crazy. He left the worst case scenario open to some degree of probability.
-- Ray (email@example.com), February 05, 1999.