Don't take food abundance for granted

Despite the fungal disease affecting bananas worldwide, the supply of the fruit to Singapore is stable, according to the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority ("Banana supply in S'pore 'stable' despite fungus fears"; Monday).

Indeed, our diversification strategy, in part, has facilitated our status as the second-most food-secure country in the world, after the United States, as rated by the Economist Intelligence Unit.

Consumers here are so used to finding a plethora of produce in supermarkets, even non-seasonal ones, all year round.

From the gas supply we import from a neighbour we are at loggerheads with over the haze, to vegetables and poultry from across the Causeway, we are, in fact, at the mercy of world trade and diplomacy.

Crops can fail, but we are not perturbed because we simply obtain them from another source.

We are far too sheltered.

Perhaps we need a national campaign to increase awareness of our vulnerability and to reduce waste. For we live it up like First World citizens when, in fact, we have nothing. It is good to be reminded of that occasionally.

Ethan Guo

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 30, 2016, with the headline 'Don't take food abundance for granted'. Print Edition | Subscribe