Mal-Nutrition: The Hungry and the Overweight
The seeming paradox of a food system that creates billions of malnourished people in some places while simultaneously facilitating an epidemic of obesity in others perhaps isn’t such a paradox at all.
A 2009 study suggests today’s fruits and vegetables grown under prevalent industrial agriculture models have fewer nutrients per serving, leading to less nutrition per calorie served. This means those who have limited access to a diverse food supply will increasingly go hungry, especially in poor countries. On the flip side, many of the billion or more people in the world who are overweight are the “victims of predatory commercial practices that condemn them to cheap, calorie-rich, nutrition-poor processed foods,” says the ETC Group. In short, one must consume more calories for the same amount of nutrients.
So it makes sense to return to a sustainable model of growing whole foods which pack a nutrition-punch, not true? That’s the mission of organizations like the Southern Willamette Valley Bean and Grain Project in Oregon and Beanfields Snacks in LA. It’s also the mission of community supported agriculture models, urban farmers, and co-operatives like the Weaver’s Way in Philly. Because good, nourishing food should be available to all, not just to those who can afford it.