Mars is from Venus

Today at the Nutrition Congress in Durban, Class Worrier’s blinding clairvoyant skills were again proved: a nice man from Mars, Inc told the world about how they’re helping make the world a better place through the Initiative for African Cocoa Communities. The language is of Increase “farm family incomes” and “Improve the health, safety and well-being of cocoa farmers and their families”. The substance of the programme is that farmers are told how, when cocoa prices are in long term decline, to squeeze more out of their land so that Mars can buy more of it from them. This was a job formerly undertaken by the state, which has recently collapsed in Cote d’Ivoire, thus preventing it from servicing Mars, Inc’s needs. Bravely, when there is no one else to pick up the tab, the company marches in, and makes good PR out of agricultural extension service necessity. Anyone who believes that this is anything other than naked self-interest is obviously from another planet. Or possibly works for Oxfam.