Food Security Definition in Simple Terms   

Food Security means: all people are able to get enough nutritious food to be healthy

Why is Food Security Important?

There is a moral and social responsibility to make sure people of all class, culture, and income get the food they need to prevent malnutrition and starvation.  All countries rich and poor have issues with food security. This is horrifying to think about when we realize over half of the food that is produced gets wasted.  Food security also has economic consequences and impacts social stability.  When people have the nutrition they need, they are able to function better and contribute more to society. Food security issues can lead to crime, emigration, violence, health crisis and social unrest.

What are the Four Pillars of Food Security

The 4 pillars of food security are availability, access, utilization and stability. 

What are the Factors that Impact Food Security

Economic factors sometimes influence the ability for people to afford nutritious food. Sometimes geography may mean there is not access to nutritious food options in the area and not affordable transportation to reach it.  Sometimes social and environmental issues impact food security.

 Climate Change and Food Security

Climate change may cause issues like extreme drought, storms, floods and other severe weather events that impact crop yields and availability of food. Climate change may also lead to desertification, lack of water resources, and reduction in biodiversity that also impact food security. Food choices also make a difference. The type of agriculture, food processing and distribution affect air pollution, point source pollution, water availability and other factors that influence climate change.

Biodiversity Enhances Human Food Security Because

Having a variety of plants and animals helps increase the availability of food and creates a healthy ecosystem.  A variety of insects help increase pollination. Predators help manage pests that can damage crops. Various plants, fungi and microorganisms help soil quality and are key components of regenerative agriculture.

What is Important for Food Security?

 A close analysis and necessary reforms to agriculture, food delivery systems, affordability, and other factors of the food system are necessary in order to achieve health equity. There are also  social and cultural factors that impact food security.  Malnutrition can be caused by food poisoning and overeating high-calorie low-nutrient food as much as lack of food.  Some of these factors can be addressed through education and marketing regulation. 

Black Church Food Security Network

Black congregations have joined together to leverage their resources and connections within rural and urban communities to address food security issues. They are doing this by building relations with farmers, restaurants, supermarkets, and others to access and distribute food through their networks.  They are also promoting land ownership and land use to produce and increase access to food in order to become self sufficient.  They have already connected over 20 black farmers to faith based institutions across the USA. https://blackchurchfoodsecurity.net/

Urban Farms

Vertical farms, hydroponics, green roofs, community gardens, are just a few ways that cities are able to produce and distribute healthy food in small spaces within their boundaries.

Nutrition Education

There are a number of resources available that help people learn what kind of food they need to be healthy and prevent malnutrition.  (See Health and Wellness & Food and Nutrition)

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