Poverty and Nutrition – Social&Family Issues Example

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"Poverty and Nutrition" is an engrossing example of a paper on social and family issues. One of the major paradoxes in the world is that in developed countries like America, people struggle with the issue of obesity while in developing countries like Sudan, Ghana, and India, people face the issue of underweight and malnutrition. This disparity is primarily due to the misdistribution of resources which in turn affects the economic growth and development of a country. There are many factors including political, financial, and access to information that is responsible for this disparity which in turn results in poverty and malnutrition: The majority of the poor in developing countries are farmers who depend on agriculture for their livelihood (Dixon, Gibbon & Gulliver, 2001).

Since the literacy rate among these farmers is very poor, they are not able to take advantage of the advancement in food technology available in the market. The government and business establishments take advantage of these farmers by providing them very little money due to which they live in perpetual poverty. This problem is compounded by highly fragmented land, limited water resources, growing family needs, and unpredictable rains, all of which cause the farmers to end up in a debt trap (Dixon, Gibbon & Gulliver, 2001). The rapid increase in food prices across the globe as a result of the so-called ‘ scarcity of food’ projected in the media has pushed several million people into malnutrition over the past few years (Bowman, 2012, p. 1). The production and distribution of food in developed countries is a highly developed science that has resulted in an abundant supply of food.

This has fostered a lifestyle of overindulgence.

In contrast, food technology in developing countries is still at its infancy due to which food production, storage, and distribution are still very challenging. Corporate companies have also pushed people in developed countries to adopt a lifestyle of overindulgence. According to Achim Steiner, the Executive Director of the United Nations Environmental Program, “ over half of the food produced today is lost, wasted or discarded as a result of inefficiency in the human-managed food chain” (Bowman, 2012, p. 1). In fact, a quarter of the food wasted by the U. S., UK, and Europe is enough to feed the nearly one billion hungry people in the world (Bowman, 2012, p. 1). There are several steps that can be taken to reduce this burden of poverty and malnourishment in the world: National governments in developing countries being the main distributor of food are responsible for the procurement, storage, and distribution of food.

They have been guilty of paying very poor attention to the storage of food in warehouses which results in a considerable amount of wastage and poor quality of the food which comes into the market.

Hence, they should develop infrastructure and implement policies to ensure proper storage and distribution of food procured from the farm and meet the needs of the economically poor in the country. Both domestic and international agencies have to work together to educate children and adults in developed and developing countries to lead healthy lifestyles by eating healthy and exercising. They should also be made aware of the gimmicks of the corporate entities that promote poor eating habits. National governments in developing countries should implement programs to educate and empower the farming community so that they can make informed decisions and choices pertaining to farming. National governments in developing countries should provide agricultural subsidies and develop appropriate pricing policies to help farmers.


Bowman, M. (2012). A world of unparalleled abundance? The Global Poverty Project. Retrieved

from http://www.globalpovertyproject.com/blog/view/536

Dixon, J.A., Gibbon, D.P., & Gulliver, A. (2001). Farming systems and poverty: Improving

farmers’ livelihoods in a changing world. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

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