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Politics and Geopolitics

New world order

There are different scenarios of how a new world order may look like. Many see the USA and China as rivals in science and technology, but also in international food markets. The war in Ukraine plays a big role in the relation of both and with Russia. Many other players are rising powers, also in food markets and within global food chains.

Sources:;      European

Commission 2023 (scenarios geopolitics);; Vesnic-Alujevic et al. 2023: doi:10.2760/145751;

Berger et al. 2022: The European Economy in a New World and update Hesjedahl 2023 (Themis Foresight GmbH);

different articles from the journal Foreign Affairs, e.g. Leonard 2023: China Is Ready for a World of Disorder, America Is

Not; Kotkin 2016: Russia’s Perpetual Geopolitics; Hill and Stent 2022: The World Putin Wants. How Distortions About the Past Feed Delusions About the Future and others

Hunger as a weapon - Ukraine war goes on

Russia uses the trade agreement with Ukraine as a threat to African and other countries where hunger is increasing and the prices for food, too. He forces these countries into agreements on grain. Nevertheless, Ukraine is already exporting 40% of the grain (in 2023) via Europe and less by ship as the bombing of Ukraine's harbours goes on.


War on resources

With the world's population on the rise, a struggle for resources is inevitable. Basic food supply is the first step. Hunger can also be used as a weapon. As a result of a shortage of food, wars can arise.

Sources:, world population: UN World Population data;;;

Trade agreements and international food governance

Analysing the impact of trade agreements and international governance on the global food industry;


Food security and access (to outcomes of the food system)

Addressing issues related to food security, equitable access to food, and reducing food disparities is a geopolitical theme and power play.


Food sovereignty and local food movements

Supporting local food systems and the rights of farmers to have control over their food production and distribution.


Public-private partnerships in food industry initiatives

Exploring collaborations between public and private sectors to address food-related challenges and promote sustainability

Policy support to food and agriculture

(Global) Policy support to food and agriculture for improving affordability of a healthy diet. Repurposing existing fiscal subsidies is found to provide the largest improvement in the affordability of a healthy diet, particularly if they are shifted from producers to consumers. In this case, agriculture’s GHG emissions are found to fall, but there are potential trade-offs in poverty reduction, farm incomes, total agricultural output and economic recovery.

Sources: p. 87 ff.

Regulation of food ingredients, especially fat and sugar

Various countries levy a tax on ingredients in foods that are harmful to health, such as fat and sugar, in order to control consumer behaviour. Companies then adjust the recipes of their food and beverages in these markets. In some countries, there is already a tax on sugar, in other countries, this is discussed.


The future of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)

The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) remains a cornerstone of European integration. Like any venerable entity, the CAP has undergone multiple changes during its existence. In each of its versions, the CAP focused on a set of objectives, mobilised a series of policy instruments, and allocated budget. There are different paths into the future of the CAP imaginable.

Sources: ultural_sector_with_the_CAPRI_model#fullTextFileContent

Conflict China versus US concerning Taiwan is threatening food chains


The conflict between China and the USA over the island republic of Taiwan continues to heat up. China wants to "re-unify" with Taiwan, but this is an important ally for the US. On the other hand, China is more and more a rival on international markets. The major threat concerns the global food chains that may be disrupted in such a conflict. China is dependent on imports, but the same for Taiwan. And for many foods and resources, African countries and even Europe are dependent on China. The interwoven situation of global trade will be challenged by this potential conflict and is already by the threat with this conflict on a potential horizon. Most countries react with general strategies or in a military way. The U.S. military is apparently working to increase the range of its missiles, the Reuters news agency reports, citing two congressional staffers and two U.S. officials. According to the report, the U.S. government is considering upgrading its weapons to give the U.S. military an advantage in the Pacific and to be able to operate farther away from China.





India's rice ban could trigger a global food crisis

On 20 July, India banned exports of non-basmati white rice in an attempt to calm rising domestic prices at home. This was followed by reports and videos of panic buying and empty rice shelves at Indian grocery stores in the US and Canada, driving up prices in the process. There are thousands of varieties of rice that are grown and consumed but four main groups are traded globally. The slender long grain Indica rice comprises the bulk of the global trade, while the rest is made up of fragrant or aromatic rice like basmati; the short-grained Japonica, used for sushi and risottos; and glutinous or sticky rice, used for sweets. But can India feed the world during Ukraine war? India is the world's top rice exporter, accounting for some 40% of the global trade in cereal. (Thailand, Vietnam, Pakistan and the US are the other top exporters).


Germany's Lieferkettengesetz (Supply Chain Act) with effects on Food Systems

If Germany is only trading with democracies, the supply chains will be shorter or shrink - the world will get smaller. A similar EU law is under discussion.