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Food Production or Food Distribution: The Key to Global Food Security?

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For more content, please see Journal of Developing Societies.

Major world agencies have identified a serious contemporary food insecurity problem, and sound even louder alarms that by the year 2050 around one billion people will be “food insecure.” The solution proposed by the World Bank in a 2012 Report is that the world grow significantly more food. Eyes certainly are on the US to remediate this problem by growing more livestock. Is “more food” the answer? This study uses World Bank data and path/structural equation modeling to determine the veracity of this position versus another. It is counter argued that food distribution and waste prevent food from reaching substantial segments of the world’s population. That is, the poor and dependent are unable to gain access to food that is privateered by governance systems that permit rulers and the wealthy to access food, and set food prices at unreachable levels for the poorest of the poor and, sometimes, even the middle class. Further, wages are set below the level needed to purchase basic food stuffs. The reaction has been food riots in countries ranging from Venezuela to the Middle East countries such as Lebanon, Jordan, Libya, and Egypt, among others.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Agriculture and Natural Resource Economics, North Carolina State University ; 2: Department of Animal Science, North Carolina State University ; 3: Department of Mathematics, North Carolina State University


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