food insecurity

Food Politics

Governor Cuomo Ends Food Stamp Fingerprinting

By Allana Mortell | May 31, 2012

Photo: Bram Cymet

Photo: Bram Cymet

Until last week, those individuals looking to receive food stamps had to endure a very critical, degrading and frustrating fingerprinting process that has been heavily criticized by policy officials, political figures and most recently, Governor Andrew Cuomo. The past few months have seen various verbal altercations between Cuomo and City Mayor Bloomberg, who argues for the process of fingerprinting, saying how the process limits fraud. Cuomo, on the other hand has been quoted saying, “We shouldn’t treat the poor or hungry as criminals.” One of the biggest factors in Cuomo’s decision to alleviate fingerprinting altogether has to do with the efforts towards ending childhood hunger. Since almost half of all food stamp beneficiaries are children, boosting the number of eligible families who are able to receive food stamps would be an effective way to end the worldwide problem. Read More

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Current Water Scarcity May Lead to Higher Food Insecurity

By Jeannette | March 15, 2012

Photo: Shykh Seraj

Photo: Shykh Seraj

By: Justin Chan

Countries such as Sudan may find it even more difficult to cope with a potential famine after the United Nations released a report detailing the water scarcity farmers currently face.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the report warned that farmers will need at least 19 percent more water by 2050 in order to satisfy the increasing demands for food. Much of the demands are coming from regions that are already dealing with water scarcity, making it incredibly difficult to ensure food security. “In many countries water availability for agriculture is already limited and uncertain, and is set to worsen,” the report said. “Concerns about food insecurity are growing across the globe and more water will be needed.” Read More

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Providing New Orleans with a Green Alternative

By admin | March 15, 2012

Photo: Topher Seguin

Photo: Topher Seguin

By: Melaina Gasbarrino

Food insecurity is a major growing concern, especially in lower income areas where fresh and nutritious food is rarely available to the entire population due to either proximity or affordability. Large urban sprawl can often times be to blame. Recently in the urban center of New Orleans, actor turned grocer,  Wendall Pierce who opened up a greener convenience store Sterling Express  in December, now plans to open a whole grocery, Sterling Farms, throughout New Orleans’ low-income neighborhoods to help address this same issue.

The idea first sprung up in Mr. Pierce’s head because of his deep-rooted passion and interest in all things food. Read More

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Despite Global Efforts, 2.6 Million Children Die Due to Malnutrition

By Jeannette | February 23, 2012

Photo: Primus Inter Pares

Photo: Primus Inter Pares

By: Justin Chan

As countries like Sudan struggle to contain rising food costs, a recent study has found that approximately 2.6 million children die as a result of malnutrition.

According to the Voice of America, international aid group Save the Children released a report that claims that 300 children die every hour despite global efforts to combat hunger. Increasing food prices, it adds, have forced children to quit school and help their families earn some income. Although the lack of food has been one cause of malnutrition, the major reason behind the death toll has been the lack of access to nutritious food.

The death toll figure is much more striking when it is broken down according to continent. The Boston Globe reported that almost two in five African children, or 60 million children, are severely affected by malnutrition.  Read More

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W.K. Kellogg Foundation Helps Decrease Food Insecurity for Native American Communities

By Jeannette | February 13, 2012

Photo: Rennett Stowe

Photo: Rennett Stowe

By: Justin Chan

Native Americans will receive a huge boost of assistance from the First Nations Development Institute, according to MarketWatch. The organization was awarded $2.88 million from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan, over the next three years to help improve children’s health and provide financial support to the community.

First Nations, which primarily serves Native American areas throughout the United States, will use the money to fund its food security program. The extensive project will allocate 10 grants each year to help selected Native American tribes or communities in need of assistance. The program has several initiatives, which include managing community-based food systems to increase the distribution of healthy foods, creating food sustainability and helping Native American communities evaluate their local food systems. Read More

News

Sudan Struggles with Growing Food Costs

By Jeannette | February 7, 2012

Photo: PBS NewsHour

Photo: PBS NewsHour

By: Justin Chan

As Sudan struggles to contain its high rate of unemployment, the country’s food costs have risen. Reuters Africa reported that Sudan’s inflation increased to 19.3 percent last month due to soaring food prices. In an attempt to limit black market practices, the government had devalued the Sudanese pound two years ago. Since then, inflation has more than doubled and has been worsened by the incremental increases in food costs. Food prices rose by 4.1 percent in January.

Sudan has been economically impaired since South Sudan seceded last year. The two countries used to split oil revenues, but the secession led to a loss of close to 75 percent of  Sudan’s 500,000 barrels of oil production per day. There had already been concerns over whether Sudan would be able to handle a food shortage due to the fighting that ultimately led to South Sudan’s independence.

Sudan is one of several Arab countries that is currently facing extreme poverty Read More

News

India’s New Food Security Bill May Help Hunger Rates

By admin | January 9, 2012

Photo: Gates Foundation

Photo: Gates Foundation

By: Saira Malhotra

India – a country growing by leaps and bounds. A place where one can expect to find malls and luxury high rises sprouting like flowers in a fertile land. A developing country whose people face daily choices of organic or commercially grown, I-Phone or Blackberry, cook at home or eat out. Yet there remains a red flag leaving Gandhi Ji’s dream of an India without hunger unfulfilled: Food Insecurity. Last week, NY Times – India Ink, reported on initiatives and amendments that are being implemented nationwide.

Amid parliamentary discussions of anti-corruption legislation and hunger – challenges the country has faced for centuries, a new bill has been introduced to address food insecurity: ‘The National Food Security Bill’. The goal is to bring relief to the bellies of 75% of rural India and 50% of urban households, which under the previous system has not been effectively carried out. Read More

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Baltimore: Turning from Food Insecurity Towards a Positive Example

By admin | December 5, 2011

Photo: Jeff Kubina

Photo: Jeff Kubina

By: Saira Malhotra

Food insecurity is a national crisis, but without a doubt, some areas are hit harder than others. A recent report on Grist.org shared some alarming figures on the current socio-economic conditions in Baltimore. For the past few decades, Baltimore has experienced an outflow of its population, leaving many parts of the city deserted and isolated.

The impact of this migration has been detrimental to Baltimore and left many communities in food deserts. Such isolation has resulted in 43% of people living in predominantly black neighborhoods being out of access to healthy foods compared to 4% of their white neighborhood counterparts. Statistics also reveal that two thirds of Baltimore’s adult population and just under half of the student population are overweight, if not obese.

The city of Baltimore is no longer willing to take this lying down. Read More

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America’s ‘Recycle Day’: Feeding Mouths, Not Landfills

By admin | November 22, 2011

Photo: andyarthur

Photo: andyarthur

By: Saira Malhotra

November 15th marked the 12th successful year of Americas ‘Recycle Day’. A prompt to tie up ones shoe laces, this day serves to remind and encourage Americans to both recycle and purchase recycled products. Apart from the basic lesson of avoiding wastage and the over-production of materials, such as plastic, cardboard and glass, there are other efforts being made to divert tons of material being dumped at landfills by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and their partners: the New Jersey Devils, the National Hockey League and the Boston Bruins. The Boston Bruins has taken it a step further and as reported by the EPA, the team is spearheading efforts to redirect prepared, unused and safe-to-eat food from landfills to the Boston Rescue Mission.

The benefits of such steps are multifaceted. Not only does the food come to the assistance of people in need, it also brings about some relief to the ever-burgeoning landfills. Read More

News

Food Insecurity in Rural America

By admin | October 11, 2011

Photo: Let Ideas Compete

Photo: Let Ideas Compete

By: Saira Malhotra

Civil eats recently reported on a growing crisis that inflicts itself upon rural America: food insecurity. Many farmers are poor and struggling to buy food and there are growing concerns that even food security movements might forget to address them. Farmers are at the very source of food production and yet their access to it is scarce.  Parts of the problem lies in the fact rural areas reside in food deserts ‘particular geographic areas where there is insufficient quantity and quality of food, or where food prices are systematically higher than in other regions’. Read More

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