Friday, 24 January 2014

Making the Grain

More developments in the current Western obsession of taking up 'gluten-free' grains from exotic locations (http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2014/jan/23/quinoa-ethiopia-teff-super-grain). After initial enthusiasm for Andean quinoa, Ethopian teff is now the 'hot' 'super-food' grain of choice. It is certainly true that both grains have some interesting properties (in terms of amino acids etc) and increasing their utilisation could well pull needed currencies into the places where they are grown. Generally, however, such fashions tend to increase the prices paid for these crops, often making them too expensive for the local populations who have relied on them. Even nutrionally-inferior alternatives are commonly out of their range.

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