Deadly food riots in Mozambique this past fall illustrated that the world is perilously close to a new global food crisis. Natural disasters and reduced exports of staples, such as wheat, have pushed prices of commodities from soybeans to sugar up significantly in the past six months. Food prices are forecast to hit all time highs in 2011, generating concerns about global food supply and reserves. With the United Nations reporting that over 925 million people suffer from hunger globally, the G-20 has taken steps to fight food insecurity by pledging $22 billion toward agricultural development. Is this move enough to prevent a new food crisis? Listen in to a conversation with David Beckmann and Roger Thurow as they discuss the present politics of hunger in the context of a looming global food crisis.
David Beckmann is president of Bread for the World and Bread for the World Institute and a Lutheran pastor. He was awarded the World Food Prize in 2010. Prior to joining Bread, Beckmann worked at the World Bank, where he focused on poverty issues. In 2004, he founded the U.S. Alliance to End Hunger. Beckmann received his B.A. from Yale University, his M.Div. from Christ Seminary in St. Louis, and his M.Sc. from the London School of Economics. He is the author of Exodus from Hunger: We Are Called to Change the Politics of Hunger.
Recorded Monday, February 7, 2011 at the Chicago Club.