A collaborative body has been formed by the three superpowers to trace the source of the blight that is laying waste to crops on key agricultural worlds.
The development was covered by journalist Adalyn Cross for Vox Galactica:
“We know that the Rockforth fertiliser caused the advanced decay that has affected so many crops, but the specifics remain unclear. Was the corrupted fertiliser the result of an industrial manufacturing error, or perhaps sabotage by a rival company? Is there evidence of a deliberate effort to harm the people of the core systems?”
“With billions of citizens facing food shortages, departments from all three superpowers are collaborating to identify the origin of the blight and halt its progress. The speed with which the blight has spread is frankly stunning.”
Rex Whitlock, marketing director at Rockforth Corporation, released this statement:
“This development has come as a shock to everyone at Rockforth. Our EX7 fertiliser passed many rigorous tests and successfully increased crop productivity in controlled experiments, so we have no explanation for its calamitous effects.”
“We would like to reassure customers and shareholders alike that we are cooperating fully with the investigation.”
The Rockforth Corporation’s EX7 fertiliser has been linked to the blight affecting crops in a number of systems, prompting an initiative to remove the product from the market.
Dr Genevieve Kane of the Interstellar Association for Agriculture delivered an urgent message:
“Comparative analysis has confirmed that the blight is caused by the EX7 fertiliser. The original poor harvests have been attributed to natural factors, and it is now thought that the situation could have been contained had the fertiliser not exacerbated the problem.”
“Initial food shortages were offset by a recent trade appeal in the Diso and Orerve systems, but the blight’s symptoms have since been reported in hundreds of systems. While we investigate the reasons for this rapid spread, preventing further fertiliser distribution is vital.”
Rockforth fertiliser can now be collected at zero cost from the following markets:
Sharon Lee Free Market, Orrere
Lave Station, Lave
Davies High, Reorte
Watson Station, Orerve
Roentgen Hub, LFT 37
Macedo Station, Lei Zi
Phillips Gateway, Ensoreus
Baird Gateway, Arque
La Soeur du Dan Ham, Riedquat
The Teveri Progressive Party has arranged for the safe disposal of the fertiliser and has offered to compensate pilots for their efforts. The fertiliser should be delivered to Wiley Port in the Teveri system.
To expedite this initiative, Lakon Spaceways has agreed to lower the cost of the Type-6 Transporter, Type-7 Transporter and Type-9 Heavy. Cargo rack prices have also been reduced in all starports.
The initiative is scheduled to run from the 16th to the 22nd of October 3305. If the final target is met earlier than planned, the campaign will end immediately.
The cause of mass crop spoilage on key agricultural worlds has been attributed to a new disease affecting plants.
Dr Genevieve Kane of the Interstellar Association for Agriculture summarised the organisation’s findings:
“The rapid decay of plant life on multiple planets was caused by the same strain of advanced blight. Its origin and vectors remain unknown, and it has so far resisted all established methods of treatment.”
“Our analysis has not determined if the blight is a natural mutation or an artificial pathogen. Until we confirm this and develop a method of preventing further spread, viable cropland will become scarcer and the production of staple foods will continue to drop.”
“The Vandermeer Corporation has offered to assist the IAA with its research. The company’s experience of molecular diagnostics will hopefully contribute to a breakthrough.”
Journalist Adalyn Cross reported on this development for Vox Galactica:
“Speculation on the cause of the blight has spread like wildfire, with theories ranging from chronic mismanagement to industrial sabotage. Political enemies are also being blamed in every affected system, with competing factions quick to lay the blame at each other’s doorstep.”
“As tensions rise and billions find themselves short on food, such accusations are likely to escalate to dangerous levels. Trade initiatives and charitable imports are all proving helpful, but will that be enough to stave off disaster?”