THE INCREASING NEEDS OF BELGIUM AND NORTHERN FRANCE
There had been a great decline in the native crops in the Belgian and French harvests of 1917. In late October, 1917, our American staff in Europe, under Poland, held a conference in Rotterdam with the representatives of the Comité National and the Comité du Nord, our Patron Ministers in Holland and Belgium, and the German representatives from the area. The significant paragraphs of Poland's report were as follows:
. . . Owing to a lesser area being planted and the considerably decreased unit production resulting from lack of fertilizers, improper cultivation, etc., the native crops in Belgium and France, as in most of Europe, are steadily decreasing. . . .
In Belgium we are endeavoring to provide, as heretofore, a ration of about 250 grams [of bread] per capita per day . . . to which are added extra amounts for child feeding, soups for the destitute, extra rations for heavy workers, etc. . . .
The total amount of wheat required [by imports] is 68,000 tons per month.
. . . In France there are practically no native cattle . . . [or] milk products . . . remaining. . . . The conditions in Flanders now closely approach those in France. . . .
In Belgium, owing to the lack of fodder, animal-fat products in the form of milk, butter, cheese, etc., and tallow have greatly decreased. . . .
Poor as the native crop of potatoes was last year, the prospects are That . . . it will be 25 per cent poorer this year. . . .