Classic Case

OK, so there is some element of faddish fashion in here, but more variety is a good thing. And we need to get the facts straight is it “high fibre, protein rich and gluten free” or is it “pure protein” compared to (say) rice or wheat? Guess it depends on the form – whole-grain, milled, ground, etc. Clarity would help. But, the issue to highlight is the international economics intervention angle, not actually mentioned. Juts a thought, given this example.

So market opportunity for producers (anywhere) and sellers to cash in on. Good? But, the market price for South American produced quinoa means the poorer locals can no longer afford what used to be their staple food. Bad? Even if increased production closer to consumer markets brings the cost down, the price will still be at the consumer market production-cost prices. So what to do? Ban exports from original producer countries? No.

It’s an opportunity to make the original economy wealthier, provided interventions (say subsidies, incentives and levies in pricing and importing) simply regulate the transition until the locals can work up the benefits of having a valuable crop on their hands, in their own purchasing ability, as well as their export production capability. Meantime, anywhere else that can and wants to grow it, does so at global market supply and demand conditions.

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