Money and Food – Is it True we Don’t Have Enough?

Written by Briana Cavanaugh

February 27, 2009

I only get two physical magazine subscriptions these days. One of them is National Geographic and the other one is Yes Magazine. Their tag line used to be something like “the magazine of positive futures”. And I loved that – I was inspired to pick it up at the US Social forum back in 2007. They’ve changed the tag line, but not their style. They have a national and global look at what’s going right in activism and movements and how you can connect and get involved locally with making a difference. Making a difference and watching others make a difference is inspiring.

I am into food security activism (which is not about using guns to secure food but rather to make sure that people have enough to eat) and this month they have a great article on Belo Horizonte, Brazil. They have implemented a food for all policy making sure their people are fed which includes many methods: from using public space for farming and that food being sold below market cost, to People’s Restaurants where whole good foods are sold cheaply to feeding children in nursery schools 3 meals a day. It’s brilliant.

They reduced their hunger and child mortality rates dramatically in just a couple of years (which is one measure of nutrition). And they do it all for about a penny a day per person. Holy cow!

I love this work. Frances More Lappe, who wrote the article also founded Food First and wrote “Diet for a Small Planet.”

If you know or want to know nothing else about food security activism, I encourage everyone to read the 12 Myths About Hunger. It explains the difference between the hunger issue and the policy issues. I believe that all humans deserve to eat food every day as a right of being alive and this piece of writing was one of my great inspirations for that belief. Hunger is a matter of policy not food quantity and that made it clear to me that scarcity really is all about how we think about it. Go read! And tell me what you think!

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