As a result of the blockades, food shortages became rampant across the country. Germany’s agricultural industry was simply not large enough to support their entire population. The problem was only worsened by the fact that many farmers were already busy fighting in the war, not working in the fields. Farmer’s wives took over the running of the farm, but the lack of imported equipment meant far lower yields than usual, according to Everyday Lives in War. As a result, there was just not as much food to go around as there used to be.

German soldiers fighting in the front lines were the first to receive any food that was produced domestically, according to History Place. To keep their fighting forces strong, ordinary German civilians were instead issued ration coupons in order to purchase limited items, including butter, sugar, fat, coffee, tea, meat, and fruit. People had to wait in line for hours to secure their allotted quantity of these products before supplies ran out. However, there was one other important item Germans were banned from eating during World War I, and it wasn’t because of food shortages or the British naval blockade.

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