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Sunday, August 10, 2014

Hunger in America

I was looking for something in the popular press to write about. National Geographic came to he rescue with their article on Hunger in America. While the article makes some good points, they miss the target in many areas. Blaming farmers and subsidies for not growing enough cheap fruit and vegetables is silly. The two of us get fresh fruit and vegetables  for $48 a month from a food coop.  With a small garden, 25' x 20' we have more fresh stuff than we can eat.  We spend an additional $311 a month on groceries, which includes diet soda and some other non-necessities. In addition we spend $33 s month on take out.  We do eat out once or twice a week and that is not included in my figures.

The end of the article does talk about the fact that people do not know how to make the most of their SNAP benefits. I think that is a bigger problem than not enough food or not cheap enough food.  One issue raised is the fact that there are not enough grocery stores in poverty stricken parts of urban areas. I can find those area in St. Louis.  It is a shame that SNAP benefits have to be used in convenience stores with high prices. Food prices, poor wages and availability of good food is just the start of what National Geographic calls the face of hunger in America. Education is a big need. Home Economics classes should be supported in high schools and Jr. Highs. That does not address the issue of low wages, high rentals, and the fact that cars, televisions, and telephones are treated as necessities.  We have a lot of work to do to fight hunger in America.

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