Here are a series of images that illustrate the complexity, diversity and sheer scale of our food supply network.
(For more info, see here.)
Less than 10% of our food imports come as air freight. Food is heavy stuff, so only time-critical produce comes via plane; some exotic fruits that have to be sun-ripened, for example.
More info about the plant is here; among other matters, this wiki entry tells us that it is used as flavour enhancers for soups in southern Chinese cuisine.
See more images and read the whole article, 24 million customers, three million cases and four-and-a-half miles of conveyor belts: The supermarket warehouse that’s gearing up for the Christmas rush in the Daily Mail, December 14th 2010.