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Posts Tagged ‘hunger’

Send the Poor Americans to Australia

Posted by msrb on November 17, 2009

49.1 million Americans short of food

What is it with the “beastly empires” that they don’t even feed everyone?

For anyone who’s just recovering from the shock of reading about British “migrant childrenforcibly removed from their parents and sent to Australia and other Commonwealth countries, or Australia’s own “forgotten children,” here’s another eye-opener.

About 49.1 million Americans (32.4 million adults and 16.7 million children), or nearly 1 in 6,  struggled to get enough food in 2008, the highest number in the 14 years since federal survey on “food insecurity” began, the USDA said in a news release Monday.

About 14.6 percent of U.S. households, some 49.1 million people, “had difficulty obtaining food for all their members due to a lack of resources” in 2008, up 3.5 percent from 2007.

This year’s report also reveals that one third of food insecure households had very low food security (food intake of some household members was reduced and their eating patterns disrupted at times during the year). This is 5.7 percent of all U.S. households or about 6.7 million. This is up from 4.7 million households (4.1 percent) in 2007, and the highest level observed since nationally representative food security surveys were initiated in 1995.

About 5.7 percent of all U.S. households (6.7 million households) including 12.1 million adults and 5.2 million children, had very low food security, up from 4.1 percent (4.7 million households) in 2007,  the highest level since nationwide food security surveys began in 1995.

USDA’s Household Food Security report, 2008,  was based on a December 2008 survey when the jobless rate was well below its current 10.2 percent. The figures for 2009 should be even worse.

The Govt Deception

This post should be read in the context of the US expenditure on the War Racket. Of the Total Outlays (Federal Funds)of $2,650 billion for 2009, the United states is spending $1,449 billion (54%) on the military.

Excerpts from the USDA report:

What Is “Very Low Food Security”?

The defining characteristic of “very low food security” (described in Household Food Security reports prior to 2006 as “food insecurity with hunger”) is that, at times during the year, the food intake of household members was reduced and their normal eating patterns were disrupted because the household lacked money and other resources for food. Very low food security can be characterized in terms of the conditions that households in this category reported in the food security survey. In the 2008 survey, households classifi ed as having very low food security (representing an estimated 6.7 million households nationwide) reported the
following specifi c conditions:

  • 98 percent reported having worried that their food would run out before they got money to buy more.
  • 96 percent reported that the food they bought just did not last and they did not have money to get more.
  • 94 percent reported that they could not afford to eat balanced meals.
  • 97 percent reported that an adult had cut the size of meals or skipped meals because there was not enough money for food.
  • 88 percent reported that this had occurred in 3 or more months.
  • In 93 percent, respondents reported that they had eaten less than they felt they should because there was not enough money for food.
  • In 66 percent, respondents reported that they had been hungry but did not eat because they could not afford enough food.
  • In 47 percent, respondents reported having lost weight because they did not have enough money for food.
  • 27 percent reported that an adult did not eat for a whole day because there was not enough money for food.
  • 19 percent reported that this had occurred in 3 or more months.
  • All of those without children reported at least 6 of these conditions, and 67 percent reported 7 or more. (Conditions in households with children were similar, but the reported food-insecure conditions of both adults and children were taken into account.)

A summary of the report is posted at: Report summary
Full report is available at: Entire report, PDF

USDA News Release
Release No. 0575.09


Economic Research Service Report Demonstrates Need for Action

WASHINGTON, Nov. 16, 2009 – USDA’s Economic Research Service’s (ERS) today released its annual report on Household Food Security in the U.S., which revealed that in 2008, 17 million households, or 14.6 percent, were food insecure and families had difficulty putting enough food on the table at times during the year. This is an increase from 13 million households, or 11.1 percent, in 2007. The 2008 figures represent the highest level observed since nationally representative food security surveys were initiated in 1995. The full study is available at

“The Obama Administration has put in place unprecedented measures to promote job creation and combat hunger in our Nation, a problem that the American sense of fairness should not tolerate and American ingenuity can overcome, said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “The Department of Agriculture’s nutrition assistance programs provide a safety net that improves food access to those with critical needs, but addressing the root of hunger requires a broader strategy. By improving access to federal nutrition programs and working with our partners at all levels of government and society, we can make progress in our effort to reduce and eventually eliminate childhood hunger.”

This year’s report also reveals that one third of food insecure households had very low food security (food intake of some household members was reduced and their eating patterns disrupted at times during the year). This is 5.7 percent of all U.S. households or about 6.7 million. This is up from 4.7 million households (4.1 percent) in 2007, and the highest level observed since nationally representative food security surveys were initiated in 1995.

Even when resources are inadequate to provide food for the entire family, children are usually shielded from the disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake that characterize very low food security. However, children as well as adults experienced instances of very low food security in 506,000 households (1.3 percent of households with children) in 2008, up from 323,000 households (0.8 percent of households with children) in 2007.

The fundamental cause of food insecurity and hunger in the United States is poverty – marked by a lack of adequate resources to address basic needs such as food, shelter and health care. The Obama Administration has taken aggressive action on these fronts through the expansion of critical services for Americans most in need. The historic investments of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, with a focus on long-term job creation, are a major part of this effort. The Recovery Act provides tax relief for working families, job training, unemployment insurance, income support and affordable housing to needy Americans and their children.

A central part of the Recovery Act included a significant increase in nutrition assistance benefits for the 36.5 million people (half of whom are children) who participate in USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly the Food Stamp Program. It also provides resources to the state agencies that administer the program, helping them to deal efficiently with increased caseloads.

“As the Obama Administration works to foster a robust recovery for all, it’s important to recognize that we have another opportunity to improve the health and nutrition of our children when Congress begins to debate the Child Nutrition Reauthorization,” said Vilsack. “It is vital that we make it easier for families and administrators to bring eligible children into the program and to eliminate gap periods when children struggle to find the nutrition assistance they need – at breakfast, during summer, and in after-school settings.”

USDA’s National School Lunch program serves 31 million children a healthy meal each school day – for some children in need, this is their most important meal that day. USDA is working with states to increase the use of technology to make low-income children whose families already receive SNAP automatically certified for free school meals and to promote policies that make it easier for eligible families to participate in SNAP. Also, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, or WIC program, ensures mothers and their children have access to nutritious options as well. Nearly half of all infants in this country participate in WIC.

“During challenging economic times, the pool of those in need of vital food assistance expands,” said Vilsack. “USDA’s role – along with our partners – is to ensure individuals do not fall through the cracks, and can access nutritional services with dignity and respect.”

Related Links:


Posted in balanced meals, Food Security report, Household Food Security in the United States, Household Food Security in the US in 2008, US poor, USDA, Very Low Food Security | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Bolivia’s Morales blames fuels crops for food shortage

Posted by feww on April 22, 2008

Morales: Life first and cars second

Bolivian President Evo Morales criticized “some South American presidents” for supporting the use of biofuels, which he blamed for high food prices and global hunger.

Morales said he disagreed with “some South American presidents who were talking about biofuels but did not understand what they were talking about.”

“This is very serious,” he said. “Cars come first, not human beings. But, for us, how important is life and how important are cars? So I say life first and cars second.”

In his U.N. speech, Morales called on the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to develop policies to curb the use of biofuels “in order to avoid hunger and misery among our people.”

Less than 48 hours earlier the chief executive of Royal Dutch Shell declared that world will need every form of energy available – from coal to biofuels – to keep pace with a booming population. He added:

“Despite high prices [oil touched $117 a barrel on Friday] , demand is not dropping, there is only slower growth. Easy oil and easy gas cannot supply all that surge in demand …”

“So it is not a matter of choice, do we do coal, or oil, or nuclear? The world will need everything, including biofuels. You name it.”

“The essential point of biofuels is over time they will play a role,” “But there are high expectations what role they will play in the short term.”

“Biofuels are all about how you develop them without unintended consequences. It is not only the competition with food, it is also the competition for sweet water in the world …”

The oil minister for Qatar, a member of the OPEC severely criticized biofuels at the energy forum, where producers and consumers meet.

“Now the world is facing a shortage of food,” he said in his answer to a question on food shortages, but “I don’t think we should blame oil, we should blame biofuels.”

Related Links:

Posted in collapse, ecosystems, Energy, environment, freshwater, Global Warming, politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Food Riots Grip Egypt, Haiti, El Salvador

Posted by msrb on April 9, 2008

“We are hungry!”

Food riots have broken out in Port Au Prince, Haiti, due to soaring food prices. The violent clashes that have paralyzed the city left 5 people dead.

In El Salvador, sky-high food prices, especially corn, the staple diet of South America, led to protests. Women took to the streets banging their pots and pans, shouting “we are hungry!” Video report

Related Links:

Poverty, Hunger, Disease

Image based on CIA world map showing percentage of population living below their national poverty line. Right click on the image, then click on View Image to see original. (Image Credit: user:Sbw01f via Wikimedia; GNU Free Documentation License)

Country In Focus
India: A soul-sick nation with a diseased psyche that spends billions of dollars on its military and nuclear armament, instead of her people!

Democracy and Freedom [sic.] Indian Style: Women washing clothes in a filthy ditch alongside a main road in Mumbai, India. This file is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Brazil License Este arquivo está licenciado sob a Licença Creative Commons Atribuição licença 2.5 Brasil. This photograph was produced by Agência Brasil, a public Brazilian news agency. Their site states: O conteúdo deste site é publicado sob a licença Creative Commons Atribuição 2.5 Brasil (Content of this site is published under the Creative Commons License Attribution 2.5 Brazil)

Posted in Egypt, El Salvador, food prices, Haiti, Port Au Prince, we are hungry! | Tagged: , , , , , , | 7 Comments »