Sustainable Agricultural System for Cities - Research Paper Example

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This means that, what it directly refers to is outright dealing with hunger in a regular basis or persistent anticipation to be hungry in the near future. The United States…
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Sustainable Agricultural System for Cities
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Food Insecurity in the US Food insecurity is the level of access individuals have toward obtaining food for their everyday needs. This means that, what it directly refers to is outright dealing with hunger in a regular basis or persistent anticipation to be hungry in the near future. The United States Department of Agriculture defines food security as having access at all times to nutritious foods that are capable of sustaining an active and productive lifestyle, which is a similar approach with what Pijawka and Gromulat (2012) hold concerning how and why cities and urban centers should become sustainable by applying certain regulated procedures . Therefore, food insecurity could become a daily phenomenon to those who are already experiencing shortage of food supply or had serious lack of it in any given time of the year. When food insecurity occurs in a given household it affects children, adults, family members, and in general any given community in the US.
According to Economic Research Service (ERS), more than 85% or close to 102 million households in the US had not food insecurity problem in the year 2011. In the US food insecurity occurs when household do not have enough money to buy the food they need for normal sustenance. ERS states that close to 15% or 18 million households in the US falls under the category of food insecure households for the year 2011. Another 9% or around 11 million households in the US had suffered a lower level of food insecurity in 2011 according to the same research agency. Those categorized in this group were better off that the above food insecure group because their case was shortage of food for lack of having enough money and were able to make up for the shortage by relying on federal food assistance programs and by obtaining emergency food from various charitable outlets and pantries. There was also another group labeled as very low food security group that numbers around 7 million and made up 5.9% of the population and such households could have experienced hunger at some time in the year 2011, due to lack of their own resources to obtain the required food supply.
Furthermore, it is possible to look at the food insecurity by the number of people who lived in households afflicted by such problems, where around 50 million people had lived in households labeled as food insecure, another 12 million people had lived in a highly food insecure households, while between 8 and 9 million children had lived in food insecure households in the year 2011.
How to Reduce food Insecurity in the US
Currently, three major programs are tackling the problem of the food-insecure households. These programs are:
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
This particular program helps around 40 million households labeled as low-income earners and the progam helps them to get nutritional food supplement. This program is available to all low income earners in the US that meet certain criteria such as monthly income, where the income generated by the household should be below the poverty line ($23, 800) and the net income after tax had to be used directly for utility and child care. There is also certain limit to the amount of asset such households could posses, which is around $3000 (USDA, 2011).
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children
Participants in this program are entitled to food items that are nutritious, education, and other social services related to healthcare that occurs because of pregnancy, breast-feeding once the children are born, and while they are growing up and reaching 5 years of age (USDA, 2011).
The National School Lunch Program
This program avails nutritious meals in school at low cost if possible or free otherwise, in a form of free lunches based on the income a given household is generating. The actual arrangement is that those that are below 130% of the poverty line can have free meal, while those that are between 130-185% could buy meal at a reduced price. There are also additional programs that are available to those with low income that are worth mentioning such as Earned Income Tax credit explained by Holt (2006) allowed to those who earn minimum wage, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, Medicaid, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, Social Security and Medicare that are all geared toward alleviate living hardships and for the most part food insecurity (USDA, 2011).
Reducing Food Insecurity in the US
There are three identified causes of hunger namely, what takes place around the world, the political and economic system in the US, and the mental state of some of the poor people. Cheap labor around the world had been attracting US jobs, whose outcome had been creating a big number of unemployed people in the US, while at the same time it takes down the wage level below the poverty line. This outcome requires the utmost attention, where curbing outsourcing alone could make a big difference in creating jobs and raising the employment level. Immigrants from the outside poor world also could take the jobs of the US citizens, while at the same time taking down the wage level with it by creating a surplus workforce the system cannot absorb, hence creating a big number of poor people in the US.
When looking at the US political system, the top priority had always been military and security that avert money from social programs. It is also necessary to have a certain level of unemployment in a free enterprise economy and those unemployed should endure certain hardship that is not of their own making. Tackling the above problems could reduce the behavioral and mental health problems that are afflicting those who cannot find gainful employment.
The Huffington Post. Food Insecurity A Problem Among Ballooning Number In U.S.: Report, Available at,
Holt, Eric. (2006) “The Earned Income Tax Credit at Age 30: What We Know.” The Brookings Institution. Web. Date of access, March 18, 2013.
Pijawka, David. Groulat, Martin, (2012) Understanding Sustainable Cities: Concepts, Cases, and Solution.
USDA ERS, Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children" Web. Date of access, March 18, 2013.> USDA ERS, Food Security in the U.S.
Web. Date of access, March 18, 2013.
United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service. (2011) "Characteristics of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Households: Fiscal Year 2008--Summary." Web. Date of access, March 18, 2013.
United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service. (2011) "National School Lunch Program." Web. Date of access, March 18, 2013.> APPENDIX Read More
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