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Jakarta Post

Insight: Biodiversity, culture key to food sovereignty

  • Emil Salim

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PREMIUM
Jakarta   /   Thu, October 17, 2019   /  09:30 am
Insight: Biodiversity, culture key to food sovereignty Nanin (pink shirt) serves her customer at the kicthen of Warung Tuman, restaurant she founded with her husband, Eko Sulistyanto. Warung Tuman offers rare traditional cuisine from West Sumatra and eating experience under trees and in traditional kitchen in Serpong, South Tangerang. (JP/R. Berto Wedhatama)

As an economist, I have been taught to calculate everything based on the most effective cost; everything in life should be low on cost, and diversity is valued at a high cost. In 1965, Indonesia experienced an economic and political crisis resulting in high inflation and soaring food prices. Thus, the economists sought to control inflation by controlling rice prices. As a result of inflation money lost its value, so a policy was made for civil servants to receive payment partly in rice rations throughout Indonesia, except for eastern Indonesia, such as Papua and Maluku, where they ate sago. They were given sago in place of rice. Leaders in eastern Indonesia protested the perceived discrimination. Therefore, a policy of national rice acquisition was born. Policies were pushed to increase rice production and distribution, development and selection of seeds and fertilizers, all for...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.