[color=red]Some highlights on this topic in red. [/color]
[quote=“Muzha Man”][quote=“jwar”]Muzha Man wrote:
The common farmer here uses far too much pesticide on his crops and has scant concern if his fields are contamininated with factory run off so I appreciate the WTO bringing in affordable foreign produce. Until I can trust the integrity of the Taiwanese farmer I don’t give a shit if they are out out of business by trade.
What a cruel response.
So, you’ve verified the integrity of all the farmers of the produce brought in under the WTO? Oh, the WTO does that for you? They must love us and only want what is best for us.
Where are the statistics to support your position on the amount of pesticides used by Taiwanese farmers, that their lands are contaminated with run off, and that “the common farmer” doesn’t care anyway?[/quote]
I don’t need to check their integrity [color=red]as the foreign goods I buy come places like the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand where agricultural inspectors do their jobs and farms are in clean areas of the country that do not allow chemical factories and the like to be set up nearby. [/color]
[color=red]About 5 years ago the EPA did a survey of rice fields in Taiwan. Several hundred or thousand (can’t remember which) hectares were closed because of heavy metal contamination[/color]. The culprit. Largely nearby factories. The EPA now has volunteers who patrol rivers and farmland to look for illegal dumping and HIDDEN pipes that pump factory effluence into fields and streams. Groundwater, often used to irragate crops is known to be polluted throughout the west coast, so we can reasonable infer that much of the produce is contaminated too.
When I first arrived in Taiwan 10 years ago I saw the factories beside rice fields in Taoyuan, Hsinchu (Xinzhu), and Miaoli Counties and stopped eating rice.
[color=red]Many people who have lived in the countryside will tell you that their families, like most, do not eat the produce they grow. They have a small section of the farm where they grow their own produce because they know they use too much pesticide on regular crops.[/color] The EPA has also complained over the years about the use of excess pesticides because it washes into rivers and pollutes watersheds. Do a web search and you’ll find various reports on the excessive use of pesticides in Asia.
My statement was not harsh, but I should have included factory owners in my condemnation. Farmers are often more ignorant than venal. However, consider the growing of betelnut in the mountains everywhere. The soil gets eroded and killer landslides every years wipe out the villages that grow the stuff in the first place. :loco: Look at all the fruit farms upstream from the Shimen Reservoir in Taoyuan. The water in the dam is hardly drinkable anymore because of the greed of local farmers.
Go to any farm and ask to see how they dispose of their waste. It’s straight into the rivers. In recent years the EPA has set up waste treatment plants around pig farms. They have found however that half the farmers don’t bother to treat their waste up claiming it is too much of a hassle. Do you remember how hard it was to get the pig farmers away from the Keelung (Jilong) river so it could be cleaned up?
[color=red]Living in Taipei I’m sure you’ve seen the number of organic shops around. Know which ones are actually real? Two. Cottonfields and the one near Wanfang hospital.[/color] The rest are bogus. Farmers will tell you their produce is organic to fetch a higher price but it’s bullshit. Pestcide residues are found all over most of the organic produce sold in the city. So much for integrity eh?
I could go on about the buchers who sell tainted meat, the candy merchants who sell snacks loaded with cancer causing agents, but I think you get the point. I’m not making this up, and if you don’t know about this you are either new to the country or living in a bubble.