If you have come here looking for simple, short and clear updates on things that matter, you are in the right place. The concept is very easy. To test your general knowledge, start by answering the question below (takes about 10 seconds). Then scroll down and see how well you have done (5 seconds). If you were correct it means you are entirely up to date and I hope to see you in a week for your next update.
Let’s say you were incorrect — nothing to be ashamed of — and you would like to know why, you will find a short elaboration (1 min) below. In case you have some time to kill you can read some of the interesting articles or watch the Youtube videos. If you would like to know why you are here, read ‘Why’.
Let’s start with this week’s question:
Which part of the world is in hunger? A or B? Make your choice and Continue…
The correct answer is B. Very well done if you got that! But did you also know that A is showing the amount of people that are overweight?
That’s right. There are more people who are overweight than there are people living in hunger. Shortly stated:
It’s not about the production of food, it’s about distribution.
Think about that for a few seconds.
If you are under the impression that hunger is an insolvable cruel fact of life, then like me, you are wrong. That idea belongs to the past, and you would do well to forget it. Never before have so many people had access to food as today. For the first time, solving hunger is within our reach.
So… can we blame the obese for eating too much? No, it’s not that simple. The problem is not a global shortage of food. On the contrary, we are producing more than enough. The greatest bottleneck is the fact that a lot of food is wasted and it is not equally distributed so it never reaches the hungry.
Not yet convinced? Good! I’m happy to elaborate. Otherwise, have a wonderful week and see you next time for your second update!
Tell me more!
Okay, then let’s start with the first video that gave me some new insights on this topic. It’s a TEDx presentation by Pablo Tittonell, a professor of Farming Systems Ecology at Wageningen University. He explains how we can feed the world with a growing population:
Another great video comes from Evan Fraser, professor in food security at the University of Guelph. Using fun drawings, he provides us with 4 strategies to feed 9 billion people (currently we are at 7.4bn).
Or if you prefer something less serious, then I would really recommend watching John Oliver’s story on Last Week Tonight about food waste in the USA.
In order to make the pie chart, I have pulled the data from this website: www.stopthehunger.com. It shows some real time estimates concerning hunger. Make sure to check the economics section as well, it’s simply ridiculous. The website shows many interesting figures, so there might be another update in the future.
To make absolutely certain that I was not cherry picking my sources I consulted the World Health Organization (WHO) : their studies show the same results.
To conclude this update, this week’s take away will be that feeding all people will be a very difficult challenge, but manageable if we distribute food in a fair and organized way.
If you believe I have missed something, or if you have a thought you would like to share, then please do so in the comment section.
I hope to see you next week!