build back better supply chain
Last spring, in March, at a press conference in Brussels, Joe Biden explained that the sanctions he was imposing against Russia, while morally necessary, were also going to cause food shortages around the world, including here in the United States. "It's going to be real," he said.

Now, Biden said this in a very odd way. There was no hint or panic, emotions you'd expect from a leader predicting the deaths of human beings from starvation. None of that. Instead, there was pure, nonchalant casualness. Biden could have been describing the weather or a trip to the dry cleaners. "It's going to be real."

Then Biden continued, recounting a conversation he had with European allies. He told us all about it. When he met with the group, Biden said, they spoke about "how we could increase and disseminate more rapidly food shortages." That's what Joe Biden said verbatim. It's on tape.

So here you have the president of the United States pledging to increase food shortages at a press conference. That seemed like a newsworthy event, but not a single news organization in this country seemed to notice it happened. Nor did the White House correct it. But others were watching. So within days, that clip wound up on social media and Facebook flagged it immediately as "false news."

Now, strictly speaking, that's untrue. There's nothing false about the video. It was entirely real. No one can test that. But apparently, Facebook users were supposed to understand that Joe Biden is senile and therefore he's not accountable for his own words. Taking Joe Biden literally qualifies as "misinformation." Now, we'll leave that whole episode for you to assess. We can't know what Joe Biden was thinking, if anything, when he uttered those words in Brussels. We can only tell you what happened afterward.

Strange disasters began to beset food processors all over the United States. In April, the next month, the headquarters of one of this country's largest organic food distributors was destroyed in a fire. Cause unknown. The next month, in a single week, actually, two separate private plane crashes took out two separate food processing centers. One plane hit a General Mills plant in Georgia. The other plane hit a food plant in Idaho. By the way, back in February, a boiler explosion obliterated a potato processing plant in Oregon and so on.

So even people who aren't given to connecting the dots, who don't think of themselves as conspiracy nuts, begin to wonder, "Is there something here?" But no one could tell. The Biden administration had no answers and no way to get to the answers because they had no data.

And that's interesting because the Biden administration tracks a lot of things, the things that it cares about, the race and ethnicity and sex life, for example, of every person in America. Do we even have trans Pacific Islanders playing woodwinds in major symphonies? How about gay Southeast Asians in long haul trucking? These are the questions that concern the bean counters in the Biden administration.

And yet at the same time, that same administration keeps no real records of the infrastructure of our food supply. Apparently, that has never occurred to them. So, honestly, we can't really know one way or the other, because we don't have a baseline, whether something strange is going on with food suppliers.

But some days you do wonder. On Saturday, an enormous commercial egg farm in central Connecticut burned to the ground for no obvious reason. Huge fire. At least 20 fire departments responded, fought the blaze for over 8 hours. More than 100,000 chickens died.

Now, that's a sad story. But what's interesting is that most media companies did not consider it a story at all. Weird, considering egg prices have become an actual problem for most Americans. Egg prices are up more than 100% in many places. And yet at that exact moment, when eggs are a concern, 100,000 chickens die in a freak fire. And The New York Times, which is right next door in a neighboring state, does not even cover the fire. What is that? Don't worry. "Things like this have nothing to do with egg prices: say the media. It's just avian flu.

© iStockFILE PHOTO: Within days of eating raw chicken meat, pets became drowsy, unsteady and paralysed before they eventually died.
REPORTER: Egg consumption has grown over the years, as many people are eating them as their main protein source. But the production has slumped because of the ongoing bird or avian flu epidemic. Over the last year, the USDA says nearly 58 million birds have been infected in the U.S., making it the deadliest outbreak in U.S. history. Unfortunately, the infected birds have to be killed, causing the egg supplies to fall and prices to surge. In some cases, stores are running out and limiting the amount people can buy.

SHOPPER: We bought eggs earlier this week here at Fry's and Levine. We paid $8.99 for a dozen eggs.

So if you ask the Agriculture Department, for example, or anyone in the Biden administration, to the extent they're paying attention, which is not much, they'll tell you that egg prices are high because avian flu. And that's a completely natural virus, just like COVID. The prices have nothing to do with chicken farms burning down. Again, not that anyone in the government tracks that kind of thing. Why would they? Because nothing like that could ever happen. Settle down, QAnon. And a lot of people, particularly the national news media, people who could not identify a chicken if it didn't come with dipping sauce, are satisfied with that explanation.

But we noticed that some farmers who deal with chickens every day are not convinced. Some of them, some chicken farmers, have noticed something odd. Their chickens aren't laying eggs or as many eggs. And these chickens don't appear sick with avian flu. They're not dying. They're still alive. They're just not producing eggs.

Now healthy hens lay eggs on a regular basis, every 24 to 26 hours. But suddenly, chicken owners all over the country - not all of them, but a lot of them - are reporting they're not getting any eggs or as many. So what's causing that? Clearly, something is causing that. Some have concluded their chicken feed may be responsible. Watch.

CHICKEN FARMER: Is the commercial feed the reason so many people's chickens have not been laying it all? This is a question that I am asking myself and I have seen all over TikTok, Facebook, everywhere. I'm talking about chickens. Tons of people who are having no eggs for six, seven months. Like, this is not normal. I have at least 60 hens that should be laying. I have a flock of roughly 100, and I was getting two to three eggs in the summer, all summer long. I genuinely think it's the feed, especially after seeing so many people have the same problem, switching to a local feed, and it fixing itself.

So why'd we just put that clip on TV? Because that chicken owner speaks for all chicken owners? Because she's the world's greatest expert on avian questions? Probably not. But because the people who should be keeping track of what's going on are clearly not keeping track of what's going on because they just don't care.

And so instead of going to the usual sources at the AG Department or calling the White House press office, we decided to listen to people who actually have chickens. And that one, for example, the lady you just saw, says she switched her chicken feed and it solved the problem. Her chickens began laying eggs once again immediately.

© iStock
Now, the specific brand of feed referenced in that video is called "Producer's Pride." It's made by Purina. Most chicken feed brands are made by Purina. Purina also makes Producer's Pride - that's the cattle feed recently subject to a recall after regulators linked the product to a series of unexplained cattle deaths. It was removed from shelves because there was a good chance you shouldn't be feeding it to livestock.

Could that be happening again? Now, we don't know. But we should tell you because again, no one else seems to be keeping track of this, that it's not just Producer's Pride that some chicken owners are worried about. Some have concerns about several other chicken feed brands made by Purina.

So we reached out to the company today because, again, we're agnostic on this, but we figured we would do a little poking. And they said they've looked into it too, and their feed is not the problem. And that may absolutely be true. We don't know. What we did notice, though, was that that explanation was more than enough for most media companies, trained as they are to accept corporate press releases as the final word on any given topic. Well, they said it's not a problem. So it's not a problem.

We don't think that's the last word. Again, we can't tell you for certain either way. But we do know and here's really the point, that America's food supply is one of those topics is worth being a little paranoid about. This is not a matter of how many trans Pacific Islander oboists we've got. This is a matter of national survival - of food. The question on which empires rise and fall.

And in this specific case, eggs, poultry and chicken, avian products, are major, major sources of protein in the diets of most Americans. And you need protein to live. If you don't have enough, you get protein deficiency, and that can stunt growth in children. So a question like this, whatever its cause, could easily flower into an actual public health crisis. And of course, it's also potentially a national security problem.

There are so few eggs right now at such high cost that smugglers are trafficking eggs across our border.

REPORTER 2: Here at the busy San Ysidro border crossing in California, word's traveling fast about a new good being smuggled into the U.S.. U.S. Customs and Border Protection has reported an 108% increase in seized egg products and poultry that people have tried to smuggle through U.S. ports of entry in just the last two months.

So are we being a little paranoid about the American food supply? Yes, we are. And we're proud of it. And our leaders should be even more paranoid, always, about our food supply.

Food, energy, water. Those are the three things that matter. The rest of it is noise. And, of course, as always, they're ignoring what really matters.