Melody sales@mangawhaifocus.co.nz 021454814
Nadia n.lewis@xtra.co.nz 021677978
Reporting: Julia news@mangawhaifocus.co.nz 0274641673
 Accounts: Richard info@mangawhaifocus.co.nz 021678358



Worzels World - Finding your place in the food chain


The modern hunter-gatherer differs little from his prehistoric forebears. First the forage, the hunt, the kill, the hard work of harvesting natures bounty and winning his daily bread. Then the preparation, the gathering together, a long slow cook and feasting. 

Satisfied from a job well done and a full belly, the caveman’s thoughts turn to love and affection. Thus in the fullness of time another generation of hunter gatherers comes forth.

It is a play unchanged for a million years and we love it still.

Every ecosystem on earth relies on a food chain of some sort. Those that have been self-sustaining for thousands or hundreds of thousands of years have achieved a subtle balance in the interaction of species where each relies on the others for their continued prosperity. It is one of nature’s myriad ironies that grazing animals rely on the beasts of prey who kill and eat them. 

There are other food chains too. Take for instance the food chain of modern capitalism. It begins with the farmer who works seven days a week. He must maximise the production of his land. He grows, nurtures and culls his herd. His income is large but so is his mortgage and his tax obligations. He is lucky enough to be able to fill his freezer with a home kill now and then. But in consequence he ends up eating mince, sausages or corned beef much of the time; there is just so much of it compared to fillet steak. 

The blokes at the freezing works do their job too – an emotionally and physically demanding one. The freezing worker pays out most of his income in mortgage or rent and taxes. If he is lucky if he can afford a meat pie or two after work when having a beer with his mates. Despite having discovered the elusive Higgs boson particle, science has yet to ascertain what part of a cattle beast is used in these pies. The general consensus though, is that it is beef of some sort and probably not the horns.

Slightly further along this food chain is the butcher who rises before the sparrows to package the days fresh sirloin and sausages in such a way that the original animal cannot be recognised. This is not the case though in many Third World countries where a carcass goes straight from field to the butchers hook, skin and all (It keeps the flies off). Customers will identify a cut desirable or affordable and the deal struck before the knife comes out. They don’t eat the horns either. After paying his mortgage and tax the butcher considers himself fortunate indeed to be in the trade and cater to his protein requirements wholesale. 

Onward and downward we move to the workaday world of the chef. He will take a small portion of meat, play with it a bit then dress it with a concoction that would make cardboard taste good. He gets to sample his cuisine and generally eats on the job.

And finally at the very top – or perhaps the very bottom – of the human food chain there are the bankers, brokers and shareholder investors who hold the mortgage on the farm, the butcher shop, and the homes of chefs and freezing workers. They make tidy sums trading and owning shares in abattoirs and restaurant chains. They produced nothing but can afford fillet steak on the barbie or rolled rib in the oven at their whim. 

Their equivalents on the African savannah might be the vulture and the jackal, the only difference being that these lowly carrion eaters are reviled by man and beast alike. In the food chain of men though these human carrion eaters are depicted smiling smugly from the business pages and are lauded for being great entrepreneurs or leading lights in our contrived and dysfunctional economic system. Producing little or nothing that is necessary or even helpful themselves, they live entirely upon the work of those who do. Their talent lies exclusively in their ability to exploit. 

Unlike the vulture or jackal,who consume only what they need, such as these gorge themselves incessantly, often consuming more than is good for them or for anyone else. Delusional politicians tell us that this is necessary for a functioning economy, that it is good for us all and we need more of it. 

As far as food chains go I can’t see this one being sustainable. There are already too many over-fed carrion eaters, and lions and lambs become scarcer everyday.

The Mangawhai Focus is the only 'Mangawhai' community Newspaper and is the paper of choice within the local area.

For more information on distribution and circulation please 
click here



Contact Us





facebook   twitter   174855-378


Sales: 021 454814
Editorial: 027 4641673
Office: 021 678357