from The Scout Report, 10 September 2010, Volume 16, Number 36
In Russia, a Shortage Triggers Soviet Habits [Free registration may be required]
Wheat price soars, Kremlin scrambles
Stockpiling as Russian food prices soar
Ask Food Network: What is buckwheat?
Epicurious: Buckwheat recipes
Russians have had a difficult few months, what with the tremendous heat, extensive forest fires and terrible drought. To add insult to injury, the country is also facing a lack of buckwheat, a crop that is a staple for most Russians. Buckwheat is used in a myriad of dishes in the country, and it can be found in pancakes, as a side dish, and as hot cereal. This situation is not being taken lightly, as public complaints about foodstuffs have led to public unrest and riots since the time of the czars in Russia. Recently, President Dmitri A. Medvedev has addressed the shortage during his visits to various parts of the nation, and he also gave a strong admonition to those who would attempt to manipulate the market in this precious foodstuff for their own personal gain. The New York Times recently reported that officials from the Kremlin are now stating that they are sufficient quantities available for Russian consumers, and as a result, more people are becoming suspicious of speculators and their ilk. Commenting on the situation, Russian economist Irina Yasina noted, "The reaction to this is absolutely Soviet-it is a classic, Soviet-style panic." [KMG]
The first link will take users to an article from this Monday's New York Times about the buckwheat situation in Russia. The second link leads to a piece about the rising prices of buckwheat and wheat from the Financial Times' "Beyondbrics" blog. Moving on, the third link will lead users to a piece from the BBC about the rising trend of stockpiling food in Russia. The fourth link will take interested parties to a detailed answer to the question "What is buckwheat?" provided by the Food Network. The fifth link leads to an information page on buckwheat, created by Cornell University's New York State Agricultural Experiment Station. Here visitors can learn about this plant, and also check out a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen that provides a lesson in humility. The final link will take visitors to a collection of recipes which celebrate the joys and possibilities of buckwheat in different dishes.