Food shortage, emergency proportions and averting starvation.

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Below is a quote from the UN Secretary-General about the topic of the food crisis: 

At the United Nations on Monday, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said rapidly worsening food shortages around the world had “reached emergency proportions.”

“We need not only short-term emergency measures to meet urgent critical needs and avert starvation in many regions across the world but also a significant increase in long-term productivity in food grain production,” Ban said.

President Bush has released $200 million dollars for food aide in this rising crisis that is described by the UN as being at emergency proportions.  Two things that do concern me about this is:

1. The $200 million is not even half of what was said to be needed by May 1, 2008 to stave off starvation in the developing countries – not starvation of just those pockets we know of but wider reaching starvation nationwide in countries such as Africa, Haiti, Philippines and more.

2. To avert starvation in the future – monies cannot just be tossed at a current problem.  Where is the long term plan?

While there is little I personally can do to raise the additional $300 million needed to stem the food shortage emergency in developing countries, I do see things that we all can do to avert starvation for the long term.

1. Encourage more local agriculture and sustainable crops by boosting our patronage to area farmers who would rather feed US and others than the gas (I mean ethanol) tank.

2. Reinstate an agricultural learning track in our public education system and do the same for ALL developing countries that face food crisis.

3. Grants for farmers who produce truly edible and healthy crops for human consumption and an additional grant for those willing to sell to other countries at a reasonable rate overseas.

4. Encourage home economics classes that integrate eating healthy from local produce and grains rather than convenience foods.

Throwing dollars at a problem rarely solves it. We need to get a long term plan into place that our nation will not only survive but can actually thrive and teach other nations how to ‘work’ for a long term solution without fighting in an emergency.

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