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England’s Larder

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Today’s episode in our study of the context for the Irish famine looks at the geography of the island and its suitability for the production of food. A good proportion of that food has for centuries traditionally been exported to England, we saw for example in the first chapter how the export of grain from the island exacerbated the famine that accompanied Edward Bruce’s invasion in the 14th century.

If you are a new reader I recommend you start at the beginning with the introduction which is here. If you have already read that and the first two chapters, which dealt with  history and religion, continue reading here.


Dairy cattle. Ireland exports over €2 billion of beef and dairy products annually to the UK and a similar quantity to the rest of Europe. Image from Agriland Ireland


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