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Guinea pigs for China, courtesy of Peru

 I'll start with the bad news for anyone with a pet guinea pig: this blog post is not about pets. It's about food staples -- the guinea pig being a major one for Peru, with 65 million of the critters eaten each year.  In addition to genetically engineering the perfect pig, Peru celebrates its culinary tradition in splendid a guinea pig festival.

Alas, despite a bull market at home, exporting the creature has proven difficult in a world where guinea-pigs are at times more associated with cages and hampster wheels than with fine cutlery. But now from the blogosphere a rather brilliant suggestion: export to China.  No qualms about pet vs. platter there. And guinea pigs are remarkably economical -- at just $3.20 to feed half a dozen people. Sounds like guinea pigs are a recession proof (even countercyclical) market. I'm investing now.

Hat tip: Double Handshake

STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images

Passport

Is Baghdad back, six years after the Iraq war began?

Baghdad cowboy boot vendor, March 9, 2009 Today, March 20, marks the six-year anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The war sparked a bloody insurgency, but in Baghdad today, normal life is cautiously reemerging. Scenes of daily life in Baghdad are featured in this week's FP photo essay, "Baghdad's Back, Six Years After the Invasion."

Above, a vendor cleans a cowboy boot at his shop in central Baghdad's Karada district on March 9. George W. Bush may have had shoes thrown at him in Iraq, but the former U.S. president's invasion left behind one footwear trend: cowboy boots, or "boose" as the locals call them. They're a must-have for young men who want to look macho.

Check out other FP photo essays: