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World food security and international organisations: the case of international grain reserves

Sage, Irene Elizabeth (1995) World food security and international organisations: the case of international grain reserves. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent. (doi:10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86160) (KAR id:86160)


The seemingly insurmountable commercial and political difficulties in establishing order in the international grain trade have plagued policy-makers throughout history. The suspension of international agreement on the rules of orderly marketing in the late 1960's and early 1970's, has resulted in extreme price and supply volatility. Many national and international initiatives have been instituted in an attempt to minimise the damaging effects of extreme price and supply fluctuations. The purpose of this thesis is to assess the nature of grain as an internationally traded commodity, and the effectiveness of national and international options which have been adopted in order to achieve these dual objectives. The study shows that the biological nature of the commodity has precluded reliable production estimates and has demanded exceptionally in the treatment of grain in the context of more general economic planning. The major grain exporters, the United States, Canada, Australia, Argentina and the European Union have attempted to protect their domestic producer, consumer and corporate interests as well as their international markets through a host of national and international policies.

I will specifically examine in detail a particular proposal for the establishment of international grain reserves tabled by the United States through the FAO at the World Food Conference of 1974. The politics and technical questions relating to that proposal will be discussed and new information will be revealed as to the nature of the negotiations and the cause of the breakdown of the negotiations when agreement seemed near. A synthesis of new material regarding the grain reserve negotiations and private interviews conducted by principals to the negotiations will reveal that the negotiations were not abandoned as a result of technical barriers, but rather to serve the political and market imperatives of some exporters.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
DOI/Identification number: 10.22024/UniKent/01.02.86160
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Uncontrolled keywords: #ethos, International commerce & international trade
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
SWORD Depositor: SWORD Copy
Depositing User: SWORD Copy
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2019 16:31 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:27 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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