FT Food Revolution
Mexico’s avocados: curbing the thirst of the country’s ‘green gold’
In Mexico, they call avocados ‘green gold’, because they’re worth nearly $3bn in exports every year. In some parts of the country, the lucrative industry is even controlled by organised crime. But every day, those avocados suck up 9.5 billion litres of water, and as production climbs, the impact of irrigation technology that reduces water consumption and increases yields is becoming ever more important.
More from the FT Food Revolution channel
Why sustainable food could mean a better deal for workers
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Pandemic prompts rethink of food supply chains
Coronavirus has made it clear the need for a more robust and responsive food system.
China wakes up to the need for a greener diet
Meat consumption is high, but there is also a strong appetite for alternatives.
Zero-waste restaurants tap growing appetite for sustainability
Their cost-effective business model may also help them weather the pandemic.
Audio feature: how to eat sustainably
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Could carbon labelling soon become routine?
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Tech start-ups tackle mountain of food waste
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Audio feature: on the frontline of deforestation in the Amazon
Lessons from Brazil could have wider implications for global food production. This is the first audio feature for a series of FT Special Reports on sustainable food and agriculture.
Conflict over fertile lands threatens Nigeria’s food security
After being shot in the gut, a young pepper farmer lies still and silent in a rickety hospital bed in the farming town of Miango in Plateau State, central Nigeria.
Hazelnut sourcing spreads discontent for Italy’s Nutella
For many across the world who eat Nutella, it is simply a tasty hazelnut cocoa spread that can be enjoyed on toast or sometimes straight out of the jar.
Planting crops with trees drives ‘magical’ reforestation in Costa Rica
Aldo Sánchez surveys a field of lofty banana trees, with cacao plants bursting with fruit nestled beneath. “Two and a half years ago, this was pure pasture,” he says. Indeed, his neighbour’s field is just grass.
São Tomé and Príncipe grows premium cocoa in fragile tropical soil
The southeastern corner of the tiny island of Príncipe, about 200km from mainland west Africa, hosts the raw material to make some of the world’s best chocolate, says local farmer Arlindo dos Ramos, taking a golden cocoa pod from a short tree.
Scientists probe soil biodiversity’s effect on crops and carbon
The most enjoyable science activity of my middle years at school involved soil biodiversity. We poured jugs of mustard water on to squares of grass and earth — and counted how many earthworms and other invertebrates escaped the irritating liquid.
Vertical farming finally grows up in Japan
Sitting in an anonymous science park a few kilometres north of Nara, an ancient Japanese capital, the Keihanna plant looks like any other factory churning out auto transmissions or electronic components.
Dutch farmers face pressure over intensive practices
Ruud Zanders is an unlikely candidate to be running a farm producing the world’s first carbon-neutral eggs.
How green is your ice-cream?
Eating a mouthful of Magnum, Cornetto or Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream, the typical consumer has little concern for the precise temperature at which it has been transported from the factory.
Methane from manure offers green fuel revenue for US farmers
The rise of industrial-scale livestock farms in the US has put cheap meat on consumers’ plates, but it also has environmental costs. Among them are emissions of methane.
Soil offers key to curbing climate change
Sarah Singla is a cereal farmer who does not know how to plough. That is a sign not of professional laxness, but of her dedication to the conservation agriculture that her father embraced.
Thai rice farmers step up to tackle carbon footprint
Rampha Khamhaeng, a farmer in central Thailand’s rice-growing Suphanburi province, was sceptical when she first heard about a new farming method for paddy fields that could reduce both water use and greenhouse gas emissions.
Audio feature: will coronavirus reduce food’s carbon footprint?
Emissions are likely to rise in the short term — but there is also a chance to build a more resilient food system.
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FT Food Revolution
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FT Food Revolution is a video channel looking at the people and businesses working to create a more sustainable food system - from tackling food waste and environmental health, to sustainable farming and food security. The channel alternates between independent reporting from FT journalists and expert posts from Rabobank.