The World Food Crisis. Fred Magdoff [email protected] 1.) There is a catastrophic food crisis. 2.) In addition to “routine” hunger. 3.) It is interacting with a longer term underlying food crisis and making it worse. A Broad Overview. Total world population = 6 billion people.
2.) In addition to “routine” hunger.
3.) It is interacting with a longer term underlying food crisis and making it worse.
Total world population = 6 billion people
In cities = 3 billion people
In rural areas = 3 billion people
Poor in India Starve as Surplus Wheat Rots(New York Times, 12/12/02)
Want Amid Plenty, An Indian Paradox: Bumper Harvests and Rising Hunger
(Wall St. Journal, 6/25/04)
Because they are poor (working or not) and living in an economic system that
a) needs, creates, and maintains an underclass, and that
b) does not admit a “right” to basic necessities such as food.
Percent of families
Percent of net worth
Bangladeshi demonstrators protest over high food prices and low wages
April 10, 2008
The police in Haiti struggled Wednesday to control looting and rioting over high food prices…
— Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2008
—WFP representative Gian Carlo Cirri
— Robert Zeigler, director-general of the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines.
The Independent (UK)
Sunday, 2 March 2008
There has never been anything remotely like the food crisis that is now increasingly gripping the world, threatening millions with starvation. For it is happening at a time of bumper crops.
Ingredients are small part of price of highly processed foods.
In U.S. people have higher incomes and spend less a % of their income on food.
Eliminating import duties
Freezing exports of foods
More food subsidies
Bush Orders $200 Million in Food Aid
By Associated Press
4:31 PM EDT, April 14, 2008
(A congressional analysis shows the Iraq war costing taxpayers almost $2 billion a week.)
Decreased support to small farmers
Lowered food production by small farmers
Increased migration to city slums
Increased larger farms
If 20 million farms can produce all world food needs — regardlessofwherethefarmsarelocated — what will be the fate of billions of people that will not find other employment?
One of the great moral, economic, and political issues of the 21st century.