Thursday, March 27, 2008

Potato bread & the cost of living

During our time in Costa Rica, I was shocked at how high our food budget was. I thought Costa Rica was just expensive. When we went back to the states during the holidays, I realized that it wasn't just Costa Rica--it was everywhere. Our move to Peru has not lessened the sticker shock at the grocery store. If anything, it is worse. A recent CNN news article on the world-wide rise in food costs reported, "Partly because of the cost of imported wheat, Peru's military has begun eating bread made from potato flour, a native crop."

That's a bummer because it is motivated by high costs, but the good news for me is that I love potato bread. But, I'd love it even more if it were cheaper. The CNN article quoted Brian Halweil of the environmental research organization Worldwatch Institute, saying, "All countries are tied enough to the world food markets that this is a global crisis."

The increase in food costs is doubled when you consider the declining value of the American Dollar. The attached chart shows the decline of the dollar against the Peruvian Sol, over the past 6 months. All the missionaries that I know are concerned about their loss of purchasing power. But, it's also one of those problems that is a blessing. While I'd prefer to have cheaper access to goods and services, I'm not so enamored with it that I want to leave. To be called as a missionary is such a blessing and honor, it is worth eating beans and rice, instead of meat. If it's for the King, then it's worth it. The good news is that we have a heavenly reward coming, which has already been paid for! Amen.

1 comment:

the brannans said...

Wow. You guys have always been dead on with right perspective. It is always a blessing to hear your thoughts as you trek through life.