Biodiversity: Apples Essay

Submitted By monika61091
Words: 857
Pages: 4

BIODIVERSITY

One of the issues raised in Aisle 3, Biodiversity, is that there are limited types of food that get sold in the supermarkets even though lots of varieties exist for various agricultural crops. For example, the supermarket I visited, Food Basics, sell seven types of apples: Golden Delicious Apples, Red Delicious Apples, Royal Gala Apples, Spartan Apple, Granny Smith Apples, Mcintosh Apple, and Empire Apples. They have twelve types of apples in total, but only these seven types get sold and other types get sold sometimes depending on the nature of the season. When they tried selling any other types than these twelve types, they were totally unsuccessful in selling for long term. Some consumers bought the new types for a while, but they came back to the old ones afterwards. Consequently, Food Basics began to minimize the quantities of the oddly-purchased apple varieties until they were no longer available for sale. All seven types of apples mentioned above are either product of USA or Canada and all have been labeled as “Extra Fancy” apples. They are very well shaped, shiny, and stainless. Apples being in well condition brings to the next issue raised in the Aisle; the domination of large corporation over small corporations in the agricultural industry. Food travelling from abroad in airplanes, trains, or trucks sometimes gets squashed. Consumers prefer to purchase least damaged products. Moreover, if the apples are not in good shape or color, people leave them and buy the better ones from somewhere else. Hence, Food Basics purchase their apple stock from industries where apples from farms get modified in good shape and color. As a result, these big industries dominate small farms or local industries. Food Basics is unable to deal with the issue of dominance since the choice is only depended on the consumers. If the consumers want to buy apples with certain shape, size, color, and taste, then Food Basics have to sell that type of apples otherwise they risk losing customers. Consumers will go somewhere else and buy desired apples which then can create an issue of food miles. Once in store, the food has only a certain amount of shelf life. If the consumers are not buying varieties of food then they sit on the shelf until they begin to rot. Food Basics perform routine checks on their shelves to ensure disposing any spoiled goods to encourage the consumer to purchase the remaining healthy food. Most of the stocks in Food Basics such as onions and potatoes come from Ontario as it causes less money for shipping. Nonetheless, some stock comes from abroad such as; Navel Oranges from Africa, Pineapple from Panama, Red Seedless Grapes from Chile, Avocadoes and Limes from Mexico. It costs them money, but consumers prefer them to buy. Therefore, Food Basics sell them regardless of where they come from and how much they cost because they can make up the cost by charging higher price. Thus, Food Basics have not tried dealing with the issue of food miles.
The main issue raised in the Aisle is the diminishing of biodiversity of crops because of “monoculture food production” (Lee, Liffman, and McCulligh, 2001, 2002). As stated by Ken Norris (2008) in a recent study that, “The fact that the expansion and intensification of agriculture has been the major driver of past biodiversity loss” (p. 2). Mono-cropping requires high use of…