Farmers in Iran are living in an extremely difficult situation with their fields and farms not being supported by the government which is unable to provide independent food security for the country and its people after 40 years.
In an article by the state-run website Shoare Sal published on May 20 and entitled ‘The government refused to buy some of the wheat at imported prices from domestic producers, quoting Mohamad Javad Askari, the Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentary Agriculture Commission, who was interviewed at the ‘Salam Tehran’ program on the state TV Channel 5, referred to this problematic and concerning situation of Iran’s agriculture system and pointed Iran’s lack of a stable food security.
In this interview this official said:
“The issue of food security is very important and crucial. If it is neglected and there is no plan for it, the damage will be long-term and irreparable. The issue of food security is even more important than war. Agricultural capacity in our country is very valuable because of the different climates. But because there is no planning, this potential has not materialized.”
Referring to Iran’s lack of agriculture export power, he added: “We were weak in the discussion of conversion industries and exports. While some countries want our agricultural products. Russia is one of the countries that wants these products; But in this regard, Turkey is ahead of us and exports agricultural products to Russia. By implementing the right policies and using agricultural potential, oil production can be shut off.”
About the carelessness of the government, he added: “From the moment I entered the parliament, we planned and updated the old laws. We had about 100 meetings with the Ministry of Agriculture to improve the situation. In these meetings, we both objected and offered solutions, but nothing special happened.”
About the misery of the farmers which is because of the government’s different priorities, that are well known about this regime, he added: “A farmer, who had a production capacity of 300 tons of wheat, has now turned to the relief committee for help.”
In response to Rahimi, to the question about the purchase and pricing of wheat by the government, which is reflecting the government’s recklessness, he said:
“For the purchase and pricing the wheat, we calculated the costs of planting, holding, and harvesting stages, which cost about 5,500 tomans per kilo of wheat for these three stages, and we announced this to the Ministry of Agriculture. The price of wheat was set at 8,000 tomans and announced to the government.
“Due to the recent drought, we have proposed to the government to buy 40 to 50 percent of the wheat from the farmer at the same price as they are buying it from abroad, in order to motivate the farmer, but they did not accept.”
About the about the price of chicken and eggs, he added: “A country that was a producer in this area and did not give permission for poultry farming and said that it would lead to surplus production is now in need. In fact, because it is not properly monitored by the responsible agencies, these things happen.”
Finally attacking the regime’s foreign ministry for not doing its job, he said:
“The first objection goes back to the foreign ministry. All over the world, 70 to 80 percent of their (foreign ministry’s) time is spent on their country’s economic affairs. But in this government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs spent 80 percent of its time on political affairs and 20 percent on economic affairs, that even has not had 2 percent of achievement.”
The main concern of the regime’s foreign ministry is its terror and destructive activities aboard, which this lawmaker calls ‘political affairs.’