Daily Archives: April 16, 2008

Lapdog Nation News Fails To Mention Thompson’s Integrity Promises

It must have been a tough Monday night for the folks at the Nation News. After a decade of Owen Arthur hiding from the media, Barbados now had a Prime Minister willing to take questions live… and The Nation News wasn’t invited to the party.

Ah well… perhaps in an effort to convince “the David” that they wouldn’t ask any difficult questions in a media scrum, The Nation News covered the PM’s television appearance without mentioning anything about his promised integrity legislation, his failure to adopt a Ministerial Code or the conflict of interest surrounding his use of private jets.

Yup. The Nation News must wonder where its credibility went, and where its readership is going… but they obviously haven’t learned a thing.


Maybe The Nation News Was A Little Too Busy Reporting On a YouTube Viral Video…

Oh yeah… the editors and writers had no time or inclination to properly cover the Prime Minister’s little chat… but in the best tradition of the paper, they grabbed a story from the ABC News website: about a YouTube viral video.

Hey… we understand that sometimes you don’t feel like writing.

Once again, it is becoming difficult to see where the “professional” Barbados news media begins and ends. How is this for quality Barbados journalism on the day the Prime Minister gave his first big live interview…?

The Nation News: Dying Prof’s Last Lecture


Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Barbados Advocate Refuses To Publish Letter About… The Chicken Monopoly And High Food Costs

Newspapers Don’t Want To Upset Their Chicken Advertisers

You know how it is folks… When your newspaper needs the revenue from advertising chicken wing sales, you can’t always publish the articles you want to.

Which is why both the Nation News and the Barbados Advocate lie when they tell you they are looking after the interests of the ordinary Bajans.

The trouble is… those newspapers lost all sense of duty to the public and became a sham where only money counts.

So here is a letter – purportedly from Robert D. Lucas, Ph.D. and Food Bio-technologist. If he didn’t send it, I’m sure he’ll let us know, so meanwhile we’ll say it is from him.

We haven’t changed one word in the body, although we have broken the article into smaller paragraphs. We have also added titles in Bold Italics again for readability.

So let’s see what Dr. Lucas has to say about the chicken monopoly on this rock and what can be done to lower food costs…

The Editor
The Barbados Advocate Newspaper
Bridgetown , Barbados .

Dear Sir/Madam,

Recently, there have been calls by some persons, for the use of cassava and maize, in the production of local animal feeds as a measure in reducing costs. As the Minister of Agriculture rightly pointed out, the land acreage, as well as the ancillary requirements needed before the implementation of such activities, at this time, preclude their adoption. In any event, such a course would affect the acreage of land available, for the production of non-sugar crops for local consumption. I will now outline measures which can be adopted immediately, to reduce the cost to the consumers and farmers.

Water Added To Poultry To Increase Weight & Profits

The addition of water to locally produced poultry should be banned. I have in the past, written extensively on this topic in letters to your newspaper and have estimated that the addition of water at the ten-percent level to poultry, cost the consumers of this country, over one and a half million dollars per year. There are efforts a foot locally, to try to achieve a twenty-percent added level of water. The importation of chicken wings should be allowed and import duties on them reduced

The local feed company should be investigated, to ascertain whether or not its pricing policies are fair. As I have said on numerous occasions in your paper, the local poultry industry is a cartel and can charge the consumer what it feels like. The feed plant and the major slaughtering and rearing facilities are owned by a few persons.

Local Feed Company Partially Owned By A Company Guilty Of Price-Fixing

Additionally, the local feed plant apart from the local shareholders, is partly owned by Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) company of the USA . In 1996, ADM, was fined U.S. 100 million dollars for price-fixing the cost of the amino acid lysine on the international market. It also pleaded guilty to conspiring with Ajinimoto of Japan and the Sewon Corporation of South Korea to eliminate competition ( US . Department of Justice, Financial Times 15/10/96, p1 and ibid 17/9/98). It took the action of a whistle blower, for this particular activity on ADM’s part to be discovered by the authorities

ADM was also found guilty of fixing the price of High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) in June 2004( New York Times, Business Section). In 2001, ADM was fined ₤10.13 million by the European Commission for conspiring with five other producers to fix the price of sodium gluconate, a food additive. On the 26th.September 2006, the European Court of First Instance, found ADM guilty of being part of a price-fixing cartel and fined the company ₤39.6 million for fixing the price of citric acid. ADM has also been investigated in Brazil and Mexico for price-fixing.

Competition Needed In Chicken Feed

It is suggested that, the importation of grain from Brazil be explored. There is a need for either another feed company locally or the importation of the raw material from other sources than the USA . According to one of the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC) ‘Business Daily’ programs of 2007, land is cheaper in Brazil and production costs are a lot less than in the USA. Indeed, some American farmers were moving to Brazil and farming soy and maize. It is claimed that, eventually, the price of oil will reached US$ 200 per barrel. What will the local poultry industry do then? Will the consumer be able to buy poultry? Will Government keep on with the imposition of the high common external tariff to protect an industry that really needs some competition ?

Yeast As Chicken Feed – A Great Idea!

I will now revisit the use of yeast (I have written on this before in your paper) as a viable source of protein for use in animal rations. Continue reading


Filed under Barbados, Business, Environment