Rice, specifically its availability on the cheap, is an issue in the Philippines because many Filipinos depend on it. The trouble with this dependence is that it is not matched by a domestic capability to meet domestic demand. This is why the prices of rice are so volatile — because supply is so unstable and its delivery dependent on a pathetically inefficient supply chain.
This rice “issue” is no more than that all-too-familiar textbook poverty equation — living beyond one’s means.
Like this whole “inflation” brouhaha, the fundamental solution is quite simple. This dependence can be mitigated by a concerted effort amongst consumers to retake power over the market from the supply side and place it squarely on the demand side.
This can be achieved when Filipinos learn to wean themselves off this staple and start consuming alternatives. The biggest roadblock to doing this is culture. As one misguided bozo observed, “kare-kare can’t be eaten with potatoes”. But one can easily challenge that notion by asking this simple question: Why not?
For that matter, how well a certain viand tastes with or without rice is the least of hungry Filipinos’ problems. As the saying goes, “hunger is the best sauce.” Anything tastes good when one is hungry enough.
Add to that the reality that rice is not really all that healthy.
Rice is mainly composed of carbohydrates. Some types may cause unhealthy spikes in blood sugar, making them unsuitable for diabetics. I am not diabetic, but do I need to be one in order for me to stop eating Rice?
There you go. Rice is really not the big “issue” it is made out to be. The real issue, as in most cases, is The Filipino.
Webmaster of Get Real Philippines