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In the October 16 program on hunger sponsored by the Social Justice Commission. Dr. Margie Pfeil spoke on Food Justice and Food Sovereignty. Theri Neimier spoke on her vision of working with schools to connect children with the earth and their food, also to improve food access and nutrition in the school system.

Studies on hunger were presented that contained alarming statistics. Just looking locally, 13.3% of people in Indiana and an estimated 37,850 people (14.1%) in St. Joseph County are experiencing food insecurity. 11,650 children (18.1%) in St. Joseph County are food insecure.

Three aspects of a broken food system were presented: food insecurity, food justice, and food sovereignty. “Food security” means access to healthy, affordable, and culturally appropriate food. “Food justice” places access to healthy, affordable, culturally appropriate food in the context of institutionalized racism and linking food access to broader issues of power and political efficacy. “Food sovereignty” envisions food as a right rather than a commodity.

Also addressed was the disconnect between people, soil, and food, and the loss of skills for growing and preserving food. Solutions were discussed, which reminds us of the quote from Bono: “If you want to eliminate hunger, everybody has to be involved.”