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https://killexams.com/exam_list/SalesforceKillexams : Trying to keep up with hunger relief
Kiana Gamulo and Aaron Block, both of Vallejo, and Ron Byas of Fairfield bagged kiwi in small mesh sacks at the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano in Fairfield. Nearby, several others packed potatoes as employees zipped around in forklifts and a semitractor-trailer pulled in and out of the parking lot.
It was Giving Tuesday which, by all accounts, is a global generosity event.
Officials at the 100,000-square-foot, hangar-sized facility said they served 275,000 people this month. That’s a 60% increase over pre-pandemic levels, noting those numbers are coming in when the hunger-relief program is paying more for food that it buys to distribute while donations are down 20% this year over last.
As it has for everyone, inflation has taken its toll, said Cassidie Bates, government and public affairs manager at the Fairfield branch of the two-county food bank. She said in exact months inflation has boosted the cost of food by 10% to 20%, and the most inflated items are also those that supply great amounts of protein: meat and dairy products.
“At the same time, we’re serving more people,” she said. “It costs us more as we continue to serve more.”
The need to relieve hunger, especially among the most economically strapped, “is greater than ever,” said Bates, a Reno, Nevada native and University of California, Berkeley, graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree in law and public policy.
The U.S. Census Bureau reported that Solano in 2021 had 451,716 residents, while Contra Costa had slightly more than 1.16 million. Of those, Bates said, 1 in 6 — or nearly 17%, some 274,000 people — turn to the food bank monthly for emergency and supplemental food, up from 1 in 8 — or a little more than 12% — since the pandemic began in early 2020.
“And a quarter of those are children,” she said.
Families typically need eggs, dairy products and fresh produce, the latter accounting for 50% of a box or bag of every distribution, said Bates, adding that the food bank also tries to be sensitive to distributing “culturally relevant meals” in a state and region with diverse and rapidly changing demographics.
The best way to help the food bank meet its needs is to donate cash, because it increases the food bank’s purchasing power as every donated dollar provides two meals, she said.
Food insecurity, Bates explained, is “the set of circumstances,” among them reliable access to and being able to afford food, while hunger is the physical sensation of craving for food when someone is unable to meet that need.
Food insecurity, she added, is on a spectrum, meaning it can be daily to less frequently, say, to once weekly or once or twice monthly.
Can communities end one or both?
“That’s the mission,” said Bates. “It takes a lot of partnerships.” They include, among many, Loaves & Fishes, Catholic Charities, Meals on Wheels and the Vacaville Storehouse.
In a land of plenty, the demand on the food bank, which a group of community members started 47 years ago, cannot be explained by a specific answer, she said.
Some fall below the poverty level, others face the high cost of housing in the Bay Area, so “it’s harder to meet financial demands,” when, in some cases, people make the difficult choice between paying the rent or mortgage “or putting food on the table,” she said.
During a brief tour of the food bank, Kathy Abraham, a volunteer coordinator, was a fount of information for a visitor:
The organization needs 5,000 volunteers every month for a variety of shifts;
The bank serves 75 distribution locations in the two counties;
It has 45 senior food locations and five drive-through sites, created as a result of the pandemic;
Families receive 35 to 40 pounds of food, the equivalent of a $60 grocery bill; and
Food bank volunteers make thousands of boxes, filled with food, each week, including what Abraham called “kitchen-free bags,” ready-to-eat food that does not require refrigeration, preparation or cooking.
The Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano is part of Feeding America, the nonprofit network of 200 food banks and the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization, she said, and supports other hunger-fighting groups in 18 Northern California counties, including during disaster relief operations.
Sources of food, perishable and nonperishable, include manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, brokers, food drives, farmers and individuals. Regular donations of fresh, local and seasonal fruits and vegetables come from the produce industry in a partnership with the California Association of Food Banks. Government-funded programs pay for some of the food and operating costs.
Last year, through partnerships, said Abraham, the food bank recovered some 6 million pounds of food from grocery stores and other retailers, such as Costco, Target and Safeway, food that ended up on a table rather than in a landfill.
While it was a cool day outside, the food bank’s cold storage unit, 8,600 square feet in all, with room for 700 pallets, was keeping perishable food at a safe, chilly temperature until ready for distribution.
The dry goods room, which appeared to account for half the food banks total square footage, is a site to behold, nearly five stories high, filled with pallets and boxes canned and jarred goods, dry pasta and beans. Drivers of two forklifts shuttled about removing pallets or unloading them from trucks.
HOW YOU CAN HELP Those wishing to volunteer can sign up to help package food in the warehouse or to help at a distribution site can find out more by visiting volunteer.foodbankccs.org or by calling 855-309-3663, then press 6.
Tue, 29 Nov 2022 17:54:00 -0600Richard Bammeren-UStext/htmlhttps://www.thereporter.com/2022/11/29/trying-to-keep-up-with-hunger-relief/Killexams : Color Us Connected: Food for thought on hunger
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Mon, 05 Dec 2022 02:18:00 -0600en-UStext/htmlhttps://www.seacoastonline.com/story/opinion/columns/2022/12/04/color-us-connected-food-for-thought-on-hunger/69692574007/Killexams : Dozens of Nevada inmates go on hunger strike to protest prison conditions
Inmates at a Nevada state prison are on a hunger strike in a protest they say is due to poor conditions inside the facility.
About 40 prisoners began the hunger strike on Dec. 1 first inside Nevada’s Ely State Prison and have accused jail staff of improperly using solitary confinement, physically attacking inmates, and not properly providing inmates with access to appeal and grievance forms, KVVU-TV reported.
"We are requesting immediate intervention from the state in regards to correctional abuse and violence against prisoners by convening a group of stakeholders represented by prisoner rights and human rights organizations as well as impacted people-advisory committees, legal experts, medical experts and other community stakeholders to provide immediate oversight into the conditions in ALL Nevada prisons, correctional centers and camps," Return Strong NV, a grassroots organization that says it is "committed to deconstructing the prison industrial complex," said in a statement.
In a press release, the Nevada Department of Corrections said that 39 offenders began participating in the strike most due to objections with the "food portions being served" but also due to "conditions of confinement, property issues and disciplinary sanctions."
Entrance to Ely State Prison (Nevada Department of Corrections)
The department says that as of Dec. 5, 27 offenders were refusing food but the total fluctuates daily because some offenders have received food one day but resumed their hunger strike the next day.
"Food is made available daily to all participants," the department said, adding that the department takes "seriously the health and welfare of the offenders in its custody and is working to resolve this matter."
Ely State Prison in White Pine County, Nevada (Google Earth)
Ely State Prison is also where death row inmates are housed in the state of Nevada before being executed.
Andrew Mark Miller is a writer at Fox News. Find him on Twitter @andymarkmiller and email tips to AndrewMark.Miller@Fox.com.
Tue, 06 Dec 2022 07:59:00 -0600Fox Newsentext/htmlhttps://www.foxnews.com/us/dozens-nevada-inmates-hunger-strike-protest-prison-conditionsKillexams : Higher food prices worsen hunger crisis this holiday season
WASHINGTON -- Staffers at Bread for the City, a venerable charity in the nation's capital, thought they were prepared for this year's annual pre-Thanksgiving Holiday Helpers food giveaway. The pandemic had faded, but inflation was high, so they budgeted to deliver out 12,000 meals, 20% higher than normal pre-pandemic levels.
But they were quickly overwhelmed, with long lines of clients waiting hours to receive a free turkey and a $50 debit card for groceries. They were forced to shut down three days early after helping 16,000 people, many more than anticipated.
“We don’t want to retraumatize our community by having them wait outside four hours for a turkey,” said Ashley Domm, the charity’s chief development officer. “We are not set up to have hundreds of people lined up on a city street.”
Bread for the City’s experience reflects a larger dynamic playing out across the country. What many Americans hoped would be the first normal holiday season in three years has instead been thrown into a heightened hunger crisis once again, with Christmas on the horizon.
A September report by the Urban Institute estimated that about 1 in 5 adults experienced household food insecurity last summer, about the same as during the first year of the pandemic but a sharp increase from the spring of 2021. Black and Hispanic adults reported higher rates of food insecurity than their white counterparts, according to the report.
“In the pandemic, nobody had jobs and nobody had money,” said Nancy Murphy, a 45-year old caregiver picking up a frozen turkey and groceries last week from a giveaway at the Redeemed Christian Church of God New Wine Assembly church in northeast Washington. “Now they’re back at their jobs but the money isn’t going far enough. It’s still hard.”
The government estimates food prices will be up 9.5% to 10.5% this year. And that's squeezing the budgets of many Americans and the food banks that have helped them, especially with the expiration of the massive flow of pandemic relief aid.
“ Inflation has been the story of the year,” said Michael Altfest, director of community engagement at the Alameda County Food Bank in Oakland, California.
Altfest said the level of community need remains 50% to 70% higher than pre-pandemic levels, and about 30% of calls to the food bank’s emergency helpline are from first-time callers.
In multiple cases, charities and food banks had prepared for increased numbers due to inflation, only to find the level of need had far exceeded their projections.
The Capital Area Food Bank in Washington originally projected it would need to distribute about 43 million meals during the July 2022-June 2023 budget year. Now four months into that fiscal year, it already is 22% ahead of those predictions.
“That was an educated prediction with a good four or five months of information,” said the food bank's CEO, Radha Muthiah. “We are always thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas right when everybody's heading to the beach in summer.”
In Illinois, Jim Conwell of the Greater Chicago Food bank says the need remains elevated. "So we’re purchasing more and we’re spending more on what we do purchase," he said.
His organization’s network served about 30% more households in August 2022, compared to the previous August.
“Families that were just getting their feet back underneath them are experiencing a whole new challenge or even if they have employment, or have several jobs or sources of income, it’s just not going as far as it was two years ago,” he said.
Higher prices are forcing people to make “sacrifices on their food,” Altfest said.
For example, he said, the price of chicken has more than doubled — from 78 cents per pound last year to $1.64 per pound this year. Estimates from the Farm Bureau set the cost of turkey as 21 percent higher than last year. And market researcher Datasembly estimates that a 16-ounce box of stuffing costs 14% more than last year, while a 5-pound bag of Russet potatoes averages 45.5% more.
Mike Manning, president of the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank in Louisiana, draws a distinction between the increased hunger levels sparked by the pandemic and the current crisis. During the pandemic, millions of people's jobs and incomes essentially disappeared, creating an immediate wave of need that he compared to the aftermath of a hurricane.
But the current crisis has been a slow and steady rise, starting in late February and still climbing. Manning said his food bank has seen a 10% to 15% rise in local food insecurity in just the past two months.
“You're talking to people who are on lower incomes and they’re working multiple jobs — just think of the cost of them to get from one job to the other with the gas eating up whatever extra they’re trying to make,” he said. “What are they going to do? Do they deliver up gas so they can’t get to work or sacrifice on food and come back and ask us for help?”
And with no clear signs on when the long-term inflation wave might ease, “This almost feels like more of a marathon with no finish line in sight,” said Conwell of the Chicago food bank.
Domm recalls the lines at Bread for the City that "just stayed overwhelmingly long,” for weeks.
The fact that clients were willing to stand outside for hours for a turkey and a debit card speaks to “the intensity and depth of the need,” she said.
Domm also believes there's a psychological element at play as well; after two consecutive holiday seasons warped by the pandemic, families are intensely eager to have something closer to normal.
“People have avoided their families for the last two years. So this year, there’s more pressure to really get groceries and have a group meal,” she said.
Associated Press reporters Anita Snow in Phoenix and Dee-Ann Durbin in Detroit contributed to this report.
Wed, 30 Nov 2022 06:05:00 -0600entext/htmlhttps://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/higher-food-prices-worsen-hunger-crisis-holiday-season-94226602Killexams : Perhaps Bill Gates Is Not the Best Expert on Hunger in Africa
The tire fire that Elon Musk seems to be making out of his new toy, Twitter, is leading some to call for an overdue, society-wide jettisoning of the whole "if he's a billionaire, that means he's a genius" myth.
These global groups—focused on food sovereignty and justice—take non-symbolic issue with Gates' premises, and those of the outlets megaphoning him and his deep, world-saving thoughts.
Here's a hope that that critical lens will extend not just to Elon "don't make me mad or I won't fly you to Mars" Musk but also to, can we say, Bill Gates, who, while he doesn't talk about other planets, has some pretty grandiose ideas about this one.
Fifty organizations, organized by Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa and Community Alliance for Global Justice, have issued an open letter to Gates, in response to two high-profile media stories: an AP piece headlined "Bill Gates: Technological Innovation Would Help Solve Hunger" (9/13/22) and a Q&A in the New York Times by David Wallace-Wells (9/13/22) that opened with the question of the very definition of progress: "Are things getting better? Fast enough? For whom?" and asserting that "those questions are, in a somewhat singular way, tied symbolically to Bill Gates."
In their letter, these global groups—focused on food sovereignty and justice—take non-symbolic issue with Gates' premises, and those of the outlets megaphoning him and his deep, world-saving thoughts.
First and last, Gates acknowledges that the world makes enough food to feed everyone, but then goes on to suggest responses to hunger based on low productivity, rather than equitable access.
He stresses fertilizer, which the groups note, makes farmers and importing nations dependent on volatile international markets and contributes to greenhouse gas emissions, while multiple groups in Africa are already developing biofertilizers with neither of those issues.
Gates tells Times readers, "The Green Revolution was one of the greatest things that ever happened. Then we lost track." These on the ground groups beg to differ: Those changes did increase some crop yields in some places, but numbers of hungry people didn't markedly go down, or access to food markedly increase, while a number of new problems were introduced.
AP says the quiet part loud with a lead that tells us: Gates believes that,
the global hunger crisis is so immense that food aid cannot fully address the problem. What's also needed, Gates argues, are the kinds of innovations in farming technology that he has long funded.
Presumably "Squillionnaire Says What He Does Is Good, By Gosh" was deemed too overt.
But AP wants us to know about the "breakthrough" Gates calls "magic seeds"—i.e., those bioengineered to resist climate change. Climate-resistant seeds, the letter writers note, are already being developed by African farmers and traded in informal seed markets. Gates even points a finger at over-investments in maize and rice, as opposed to locally adapted cereals like sorghum. Except his foundation has itself reportedly focused on maize and rice and restricted crop innovation.
Finally, the groups address Gates' obnoxious dismissal of critics of his approach as "singing Kumbaya": "If there's some non-innovation solution, you know, like singing Kumbaya, I'll put money behind it. But if you don't have those seeds, the numbers just don't work," our putative boy-hero says. Adding pre-emptively, "If somebody says we're ignoring some solution, I don't think they're looking at what we're doing."
The open letter notes respectfully that there are "many tangible ongoing proposals and projects that work to boost productivity and food security." That it is Gates' "preferred high-tech solutions, including genetic engineering, new breeding technologies, and now digital agriculture, that have in fact consistently failed to reduce hunger or increase food access as promised," and in some cases actually contribute to the biophysical processes driving the problem. That Africa, despite having the lowest costs of labor and land, is a net exporter is not, as Gates says, a "tragedy," but a predictable and predicted result of the fact that costs of land and labor are socially and politically produced: "Africa is in fact highly productive; it's just that the profits are realized elsewhere."
At the end of AP's piece, the outlet does the thing elite media do where they fake rhetorical balance in order to tell you what to think:
Through his giving, investments and public speaking, Gates has held the spotlight in exact years, especially on the courses of vaccines and climate change. But he has also been the subject of conspiracy theories that play off his role as a developer of new technologies and his place among the highest echelons of the wealthy and powerful.
The word "but" makes it sound like a fight: between holding a spotlight (because you're wealthy and powerful) or else being subject to presumably inherently ignorant critical conjecture (because you're wealthy and powerful). Not to mention this anonymously directed "spotlight"—that media have nothing to do with, or no power to control.
Fri, 02 Dec 2022 01:40:00 -0600entext/htmlhttps://www.commondreams.org/views/2022/12/02/perhaps-bill-gates-not-best-expert-hunger-africaKillexams : ‘The Menu’ Co-Writers on Exploring Hunger and Why They Didn’t Use Body Size to Illustrate Themes
Seth Reiss and Will Tracy also unpack how the diners are battling with their food, why Hawthorn staff are living in a cult and what separates two American food greats — the cheeseburger and the s'more — in the movie.
[This story contains spoilers for .]
At the center of Searchlight Pictures’ The Menu is a question that transcends the film’s more obvious discussions about class and gender: What does it mean to be hungry?
Set in a Michelin-esque restaurant on a remote island where the staff also live and the diners pay $1,200 for one of 12 exclusive spots, the Mark Mylod-directed film cooks up both a comedic and horrific, literal and metaphorical study of what sustains us.
Hunger, then, has many flavors in this tale co-written by Seth Reiss and Will Tracy. But arguably its most interesting was noted by star Judith Light, who told The Hollywood Reporter during the film’s premiere that what ultimately binds all of these characters — whether they are back or front of house — is a perpetual craving for something they can’t have.
Light described her character as a woman desperately clinging to her “self-esteem, her place in the world, her entitlement, her wealth and the kind of lifestyle she thinks she wants to have.” She’s hungry, the actress said, like everyone around her at the restaurant who has “wants, needs, hungers that they’re not able to solve in the ways that they have always been trying to solve them.”
They are then all, from the ego-driven Chef Slowik (Ralph Fiennes) to his deadly driven staff and fearfully ravenous diners, starving. That subtext is what makes The Menu such a compelling exploration of class, workplace environments, power dynamics and, of course, food. But it’s also what allows it to be a subtle, rejection of age-old Hollywood tropes that use body size to reveal a moral failing.
“These people are all really malnourished,” Reiss tells THR. “They are all like metaphorically sickly thin.”
Reiss and Tracy spoke to THR about how their horror comedy explores not just who’s at the table but what’s on it and why through their fictional restaurant’s staff, diners and food.
Producer Betsy Koch shared that these characters are based on people that you, Will, saw at restaurants. In light of the genre and the themes, did you both want those diners to feel like actualized people or caricature versions of them?
SETH REISS When the tension heightens, I think they actually become less of a caricature as the night moves on. They start as “rich pricks,” but once it gets nuts in there, they kind of shed that and we see how the one thing they all have in common is that they’re all quite sad, empty people. They’re sad, empty people looking to be fed, but they will never satiate their hunger. That’s one thing they all have in common.
WILL TRACY There’s something about, especially in a restaurant like that where you do feel like you’re someone on a stage because it’s just that one seating a night, it’s always so many tables. Everyone’s kind of looking at every other table, so there’s a way in which almost unconsciously, you revert to type or the most stereotypical version of yourself. You’re the most presented version of yourself and — almost without being aware of it — act differently or act like a more heightened version of yourself because you’re aware of being seen and there’s a kind of a hushed, presentational atmosphere to the restaurant. We liked the idea of they might be the most extreme or presented versions of themselves earlier in the evening and then, as often happens when the situation becomes very tense or alarming or scary, the veil drops a bit. People become a bit more honest and a bit more real and the characters start to reveal more about themselves to each other that they were desperate not to reveal at the beginning of the evening.
You explore hunger in several ways in this film, including how all but one of the diners seem to have a relationship with food that is devoid of joy — almost like food or eating is either their enemy or an untouchable art. How did you think about that line between food appreciation and elitism and its relationship to their hunger?
REISS One of the ways we went about it is that Chef is not cooking bad food. It’s not Margot’s (Anya Taylor-Joy) taste, but Chef is cooking amazing food and he’s cooking food that can absolutely be enjoyed — even the breadless bread plate, which is him taking a poke at them. There’s no world in which all those sauces aren’t beautifully plated and don’t taste exquisite. But I think that none of the people can completely enjoy it and enjoy the food because they’re so caught up in what it means for them to be at the restaurant. Even someone like Tyler (Nicholas Hoult), who knows everything about the food — that is even more important to him than actually enjoying the food.
TRACY That idea of the enemy, you’re right. The kitchen becomes therefore an enemy as well because in a restaurant like that, although you’re dressing up very nice, you’re listening to the presentation of each course and patiently awaiting the next course, you’re supposed to assume almost the position, not of a diner, but of a guest at a museum. But some part of your animal lizard brain still says, “I need my nutrients now and I need them to go inside of my body,” and you have to resist the urge to be saying that and resist the urge to shovel it in your mouth. So there is a little bit of this silent battle happening between respecting the artistry of the institution and “I need the molecules in my anatomy now.” Even in a perfectly nice meal where everything goes as planned, there is a kind of silent battle happening. I think we’re aware of that throughout the film, even before anything bad or crazy or violent or threatening happens. It feels as though there’s an uneasy kind of battle happening between hungry people who want their food and also people who have opinions about the food. Basically, that quiet non-conversation becomes a very loud conversation as the movie progresses, but it was already happening from the second they walked in. They were doing battle.
There are staff who literally die under the weight of their hunger. How did you want to explore their hunger similarly or differently in the back of house?
REISS In the back of the house, their hunger is to please Chef Slowik. He’s the only one that can fill them and make them full. I think that for [sous chef] Jeremy (Adam Aalderks) part of it is he’s aware that not only can he never live up to what his idea of greatness is, but he’ll never ultimately be able to impress Chef. Sadly, I think that is their hunger. In any sort of creative situation where people work and there’s always that person above them, giving them the checkmark, your hunger is to make them happy and to please them, for better or worse.
TRACY Seth and I have definitely felt that in creative situations with people who are a boss to us, but it’s there especially in the kitchen. A lot of kitchens in restaurants like this — especially this restaurant because it’s on an island and they live on that island — function the same way that a cult functions. They try to limit your access to the outside world and in doing so, they limit the sources of approbation and spiritual nourishment that you get from family, friends, cultural pursuits and communal pursuits. They replace all of that with the approbation and, at times, very harsh criticism of one single figure. I think Chef Slowik was smart enough, or you might say devious enough, to know that the best way to do that sometimes is with a gentleness or with a patina of love.
You never see him scream at his staff in the movie. You see him say to them, “I love you” and they say “I love you” back. He’s quite encouraging of their work. He even makes a big show of atoning for his past sins with the course where he allows a sous chef in his kitchen to tell them that he had sexually harassed her for quite a long time. I think he thinks at that moment, “Look at the work that I’ve done on myself. Look at how progressive I am by giving her that moment.” The whole evening is really about feeding that part of his ego. He thinks that he has moved beyond his ego to a sort of pure and transcendent and wonderful state of grace — that with the kitchen they’re all in there together as equals, but they’re not.
REISS In terms of the customers, one thing that binds them all together is their hunger will never be satiated. They’ll constantly be hungry, constantly be hungry, constantly be hungry. That’s why perhaps they need to go, but the one person whose hunger could be satiated is Margot’s. There’s a great but small exchange at the end where Chef asked her, “How hungry are you?” And she says, “I’m starved.” She needs something. She wants something, and I think she is able to accept that thing that Chef wants to deliver her and enjoy it. I also think in a certain sense, Chef is starved too, and Margot knows that, and she is going to feed his ego or whatever he needs to feel full, which is to provide this cheeseburger for her.
That moment feels really indicative of how an element of power dynamics work. To have power over Margot, she has to be hungry, and so when she’s not hungry, there’s less power over her. Is that why she only takes a bite and walks away? Has she gotten a taste of this experience and then pulled back because she’s “satiated” or just had enough and isn’t willing to let it control her?
TRACY We like keeping it open, that question. We like the ambiguity of do they actually make a connection at the end, these two people who work in the service industry. Do they meet as peers and as equals and share this kind of lovely and honest moment? Or has she simply found a way to, as she has probably done many times in her profession, appease and mollify and satisfy a particular kind of male ego? Does she think they are sharing a moment and he has simply realized, “Oh, she has given me a perfect poetic ending that I didn’t really have for my menu,” so he’s using her in a way? All these interpretations are kind of valid and interesting to us, so we prefer to just leave it a little bit unanswered.
REISS There’s something to be said about how these are two service industry employees who do enjoy or have enjoyed what they do. At the end of the movie, I think Margot enjoys providing this experience for the chef and Chef enjoys providing this experience for Margot. Both of them ultimately enjoy this perfect service industry customer relationship because when done well and right, it can be quite lovely. Everyone’s respectful of one another. So there’s something I think quite nice about that final moment whether or not she’s playing a game or whether he’s aware she’s playing a game. There is something in a nanosecond very lovely happening.
Media has historically linked the exploration of gluttony with body weight, but you didn’t choose to make bigger bodies the literal embodiment of these people’s hunger here.Did you intentionally stay away from that?
REISS These people are all really malnourished. They are all like metaphorically sickly thin, so that’s a cool observation.
TRACY Yeah, and I don’t think we ever would have considered portraying someone as being gluttonous in a kind of stereotypical or easy or cartoonish way. I think that wasn’t interesting to us and also, it probably would have seemed very easy to do that in a way that demonized somebody. That wouldn’t feel right to us at all. In some ways, I think it would detract from our real theme.
So the ending has two really interesting commentaries about food, the first involving cheeseburgers. You argue it’s sort of a universal meal, regardless of things like class or gender. Why the cheeseburger as Margot’s mechanism of escape?
TRACY I think we knew that you need whatever that thing is, you need that shot — that cheeseburger — to have at least a slight feeling, a groan of satisfaction, happening throughout the theater when it appears. And it just seemed as though at the time, our vegetarian friends notwithstanding — although we never hear if it’s actual meat in that burger — there wasn’t even much of a conversation. That’s actually the thing that we all want.
REISS I think what is also cool and maybe an overlooked touch is that he makes a fucking amazing burger within the confines of what is normal. He makes the best normal cheeseburger with as much pride and obsession as he’s made the other stuff, as he did the tacos. He cares about the quality of that cheeseburger as much as he cares about the quality of the dipping sauces. He didn’t just throw it together. He puts in a lot of passion — as much Chef Slowik fastball on that cheeseburger as he can.
In the next beat, you turn around and make the s’more the focus of Chef’s disdain. But they are both great, classic “American” foods. Why was the deconstructed s’more and not the cheeseburger everyone else’s demise?
TRACY In a way it is the opposite of what we were just saying about the cheeseburger. There’s nothing clever about the cheeseburger. It even says the title card, “Just a well-made cheeseburger.” The s’more, once Margot is gone, sees Chef sort of retreat back to a thing that runs through a few of the courses including the taco night course. He’s basically talking about a traditional American Taco Tuesday suburban ceremony. But the taco service looks nothing like what we would have on Taco Tuesday and the s’more looks nothing like what we would have in the s’more. He can’t help himself from doing that. By the way, I’m sure there are a lot of high-end restaurants all around the world that do some version of a s’more. I’m sure we’re not the first to land on that.
He’s trying to have that high-low dichotomy. I think he’s trying to do a very clever, intellectualized interpretation. But at the same time, and this is in large part due to Ralph Fiennes — who really collaborated with us quite a bit on that course — there is a kind of poetry to it. Even if it’s an elevated, deconstructed s’more. If you do it right, and if you have the kind of commitment and poetry of a Chef Slowik, the smell of the campfire and that taste — the sense memory of those three ingredients — there’s a feeling of childhood. There’s something that comes back to you. You’re transported in some way, and these people who are in some ways at the end are brought back to innocence and the beginning of childhood in the same instance. So there is something strangely beautiful about it, even though it is kind of up its own ass.
Interview edited for length and clarity.
Tue, 06 Dec 2022 00:40:00 -0600en-UStext/htmlhttps://www.hollywoodreporter.com/movies/movie-news/the-menu-co-writers-hunger-body-size-1235275667/?_escaped_fragment_=Killexams : Food bank volunteer driven by her own hunger experience; 'I still cry for that little girl'
FAIRFIELD -- A Bay Area food bank volunteer knows what it's like to grow up hungry and her experience is driving her to help others like her.
This holiday season, inflation and the pandemic are impacting the demand on Bay Area food banks, and the person standing next to you in line or passing you in the halls at school or church may very well be hungry.
"We wound up living in a tent at Lake Meade where we relied on the generosity of those around us," said Karen, who volunteers at the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano and preferred not to use her last name.
Karen lived with a single mom, her brother and their pet dog after her mother fell on hard times. They moved to Las Vegas, where Karen's mother believed she could find work. When she couldn't, often there wasn't enough food to feed her children.
Karen remembers days collecting cans tossed in bushes to get enough money to buy a dollar hamburger, which she would share with her brother while her mother looked on.
"My mom would often say she'd already eaten, she was full, didn't need anything," said Karen. "I still cry for that little girl. I feel sad for her and for her brother and for her mom."
Now that she's grown, Karen has channeled the pain of growing up hungry to helping other kids like she used to be helped. She imagines the bags she fills at the food bank will go to kids in need, like she once was, noting that we all may be living near someone who is hungry but may not admit it.
"You do know people who are hungry," said Karen. "They don't show it outwardly."
As KPIX 5's 3 p.m. anchor, community-issues reporter and Executive Producer over EPIC storytelling, I hope to get to know you and earn your trust. I promise, when I tell your story, I'll do my best to live my values about how stories can shape and change our world, always seeking to make visible what is essential to the stories that shape this beautiful part of California.
Wed, 30 Nov 2022 02:29:00 -0600en-UStext/htmlhttps://www.cbsnews.com/sanfrancisco/news/hunger-food-bank-demand-food-for-bay-area-families/Killexams : Inflation is producing, and hiding, hunger in Southern California
The start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 was an economic nosedive for millions of Americans, as unemployment spiked in a matter of days and food banks and pantries were swamped by hungry people in need, poor and wealthy alike.
But now, even with unemployment down to pre-pandemic levels and wages rising slightly, the hunger situation nationally and in Southern California might be more dire.
“During the pandemic, we saw food lines we haven’t seen since the Depression,” said LaVal Brewer, chief executive of South County Outreach, a hunger and homeless prevention organization in Irvine.
“But conditions might actually be worse today than during the pandemic,” he added. “It’s not as visible, maybe, but it’s just as bad.”
Consider: This month, if exact trends hold, the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank will help about 800,000 people. That’s down from the 1 million people a month who were helped during the peak of the pandemic, but more than double the 300,000 helped during each of the last months of pre-pandemic 2019.
“We’re lucky. We have good relationships with donors, and that’s helping,” said the group’s spokesman David May. “But demand isn’t down all that much.”
Nonprofit food providers in Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties report similar, if not identical, trends.
But food experts say those numbers tell only part of the story.
During the pandemic, short-term relief programs from all levels of government directed food and money to food banks and others offering free nutrition. Though distribution was hampered by the spread and threat of COVID-19, most people who needed food in 2020 and 2021 usually could get it.
It’s unclear if that’s true today. Local food bank leaders say this year’s numbers don’t reflect the world of people who aren’t showing up for food but are still hungry.
Brewer, of South County Outreach, said his organization got food to 932 families last month – an all-time high. Though he was happy to see that people view his agency as a welcome resource, Brewer noted that an all-time high for giving away food isn’t a good thing. And, like others, he believes even more people need help but aren’t getting it.
Again, that story is partly reflected in numbers.
Orange County Food Bank is on track to deliver out about 27 million pounds of food this year, either directly to people in need or indirectly to smaller food pantries and others, according to the nonprofit. Though that’s up from the 23 million pounds the group distributed in 2019, it’s well under the 63 million pounds of food OC Food Bank handled last year.
But where the 2020-’21 spike in demand was met with an influx of food donations and cash, this year’s decline is a supply-side issue.
“That lower total this year is a reflection of less food to deliver out, not a drop in demand,” said Mark Lowry, the organization’s director of operations.
“The truth is, we don’t know how many people are actually in need.”
Lowry pointed to an email exchange this week in which he saw a request from a group to feed 500 families, but a reply that noted the Food Bank could only supply food for about half that number.
“Those other families aren’t getting help, but it doesn’t mean they don’t need it,” he said. “Hunger hasn’t gone anywhere.”
Eating away at budgets
The problem is inflation, which Lowry and others said is adding to the region’s hunger problem in different ways, some obvious and some hidden.
On the obvious side, inflation means basic nutrition is tougher to afford. Food prices rose nearly 8% over the past year in the Los Angeles region, according to the latest numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Prices for energy (gasoline) jumped 23.8%, while prices for other items – shelter, clothing, transportation – rose at a more modest 6%.
That is prompting low-wage earners and fixed-income seniors – who comprise the vast majority of people served by food pantries – to seek help with their food bills, the rare budget item that can be reduced from month to month.
“The cost of living is pushing more people who wouldn’t have seen themselves needing food support in 2019 into a different situation today,” said Brewer.
But the less-obvious problem is inflation’s effect on non-profit food providers. Though they operate like any other business, with bills for gas and rent and other expenses, they don’t have the option of passing those higher costs to their customers.
“We deliver with trucks, and we service about 300 pantries,” said Claudia Keller, executive director at Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County. “That’s a lot of gas.”
Brewer echoed that.
“All of the same issues you see in a household, or a business, are seen here,” he said. “We’re dancing the inflation dance ourselves.”
At most food banks in Southern California, 90% or more of the product given to people in need is donated, either from individuals or farmers, or grocery stores or restaurants. That softens, but doesn’t eliminate, the pain of rising grocery prices. But it does curtail some of those donations. Broadly speaking, food bank operators said the same economic dymanic that brings more people to the food bank – inflation – also pushes the food providers a little closer to closing their doors.
“We’re not thinking for now. But we do wonder if we can keep the lights on in six months,” Brewer said.
Inflation also hurts food banks by changing the national narrative. During the pandemic, local and national media were focused on stories about people in cars (sometimes high-priced cars) idling in muli-mile-long lines as they waited for a box of food. Today, the news focus is about how economic woes persist even as the job market is growing.
One story tends to prompt people to think about food banks, the other does not. For organizations that survive on donations, that shift in perception has hurt.
“We’re not the big story right now,” said Lowry of the OC Food Bank. “That means we’re not top of mind. People are still generous, but people have moved on.”
Others also note that inflation is driving hunger.
In September, the Urban Institute released a study that found that 1 in 5 Americans currently face some form of food insecurity, roughly the same as during the height of the pandemic.
In its report, the Urban Institute – a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit that tracks economic data that affects American families – described the situation this way:
“High food price inflation, along with elevated costs for other basic needs, such as transportation and rent, have likely eroded food budgets in the last year.
“In addition, some of the safety net responses that buffered food insecurity in 2021 are no longer in place. Unemployment rates have declined significantly since early 2020, and wages have increased for many, but wage growth has not kept pace with rapidly rising inflation.”
The study also found that the greatest need was among families with young children and in communities of color. During the past year, the report found, the number of people expressing a severe need for food had nearly doubled, from about 5% to about 9% of the population.
If the start of the pandemic was a economic reckoning for all Americans, a deadline coming early next year might result in a second hit for lower-income Californians.
In October, the state announced that it would end the official public health emergency prompted by COVID-19 on Feb. 28, 2023, nearly three years after the initial order was issued.
Though the state wants to keep some health programs in place and, among other things, allow nurses to administer COVID-19 vaccines, local food bank officials fear the state will cut the emergency allotment for the state’s food-supplement program, CalFresh. If that plays out — and it’s unclear, for now, if the state plans to end the subsidy – lower-income people might get less each month from CalFresh. That, in turn, could strain budgets that for many are already beyond breaking.
“When federal (pandemic) assistance subsided, we knew it was coming and we could deal with it. And the generosity of community – our community in particular – has remained up because people know we need it,” said Keller of Second Harvest.
“But benefits for individuals, that’s different. If you’re getting CalFresh benefits, and that goes away, that could be a real food cliff, again, for a lot of people.”
Sun, 04 Dec 2022 03:23:00 -0600Andre Moucharden-UStext/htmlhttps://www.ocregister.com/2022/12/03/inflation-is-producing-and-hiding-hunger-in-southern-california/Killexams : Hunger has taken hold across Africa. We need a new approach to tackling its causes
Malnutrition looms large in Africa. Over a fifth of the continent’s 1.3 billion people faced hunger last year, more than twice the level of any other continent.
Even before the war in Ukraine jeopardised supplies to many African countries of grain and fertiliser needed to feed their people or for growing crops, Covid-19 had disturbed food processing and supply chains, affecting world economies and provoking agricultural and food inflation.
Though the immediate threat of stocks running out has abated, the shock to food systems has forced urgent debate on the long-term dangers of malnutrition and how it must be addressed.
Especially in Africa, hunger and malnutrition threaten human life, accounting for between 20% and 40% of maternal deaths on the continent. Malnutrition is one of the leading killers of children under five in Africa.
It also affects the physical, mental, cognitive and physiological development of African children and prevents adolescents from reaching their full potential, locking entire populations into vulnerability. It is therefore a human rights issue that extends far beyond the already volatile impact on public health.
It is time to take a hard look at how hunger and malnutrition have taken hold across Africa and must now be tackled.
The climate crisis, widespread political instability and, more recently, the pandemic and cost of living crisis all threaten to raise levels of malnutrition.
Too much time has already been lost in this battle; a fresh approach is required.
In April, 54 African countries signed the Malabo declaration calling for better nutrition. However, despite the best intentions, many are unlikely to achieve the declaration targets by 2025. Huge efforts will be needed to achieve those linked to sustainable development by 2030.
We, African countries, need to coordinate our efforts to identify, document, appropriate and broadcast the root causes of hunger in all its forms.
To do this, African states need to commit to creating and maintaining a sustainable institutional, political, legal and financial environment in terms of food security and nutrition, by coordinating efforts – at national, regional and continental levels.
That’s because improving food security and nutrition requires systemic change for healthy, sustainable and environmentally sensitive food systems, and resilient and strong universal health systems.
Inclusive drinking water and sanitation systems must be delivered through effective education and social protection systems, ensuring that no one is left behind, including the poorest and most nutritionally vulnerable.
It was a positive step forward when the African Union’s February summit named 2022 the African Year of Nutrition under the theme of building resilience in nutrition and food security.
It is a theme I proposed to involve all actors in finding solutions to reinforce nutrition and food security resilience and deliver accelerated human, social and economic capital development.
Bringing together more than a dozen African government delegations, and international and continental organisations, the African Union summit on malnutrition and food security, to be held in Abidjan on 8 December, must allow us to move further along the road of food security.
This holistic approach was developed further in May at the UN Cop15 convention to combat desertification, hosted by Ivory Coast. There has been widescale recognition that African countries are employing farming methods that often destroy agricultural land and are using seed types unsuited to African soil.
New solutions in the form of innovations and skills can only happen when countries come together in a spirit of cooperation.
African countries working together are more likely to understand one another’s challenges and share knowledge, leading to synergies in nutrition and food security. A combined effort in farming and food production could also result in new and more diversified sources of food supply from different trading partners.
Engagement with international agencies and NGOs that have pursued inefficient strategies and failed to eradicate malnutrition might also Strengthen with a joined-up approach by African countries.
Currently, there are many regional meetings and international forums taking place that address malnutrition, but they are often duplicated or work across each other’s aims.
Sun, 04 Dec 2022 16:00:00 -0600entext/htmlhttps://www.theguardian.com/global-development/commentisfree/2022/dec/05/africa-hunger-malnutrition-food-security-ivory-coast-summitKillexams : ‘Holiday season be killing me’: Target employee compares working retail during the holidays to the ‘Hunger Games’
With the holidays just around the corner, most people are scrambling to buy last-minute gifts and trying to find the best deals. Despite being a jolly time of the year, it can bring out the worst. In a viral TikTok, a Target employee compares working at the company during the holiday season to The Hunger Games.
The video features user Joshy Thomason (@jjthomason7) as he sits in the backroom in a cubicle at Target. He is scratching his head as he looks at the camera in disbelief. The sound used in the background is from The Hunger Games, saying “welcome” a few times followed by “happy Hunger Games.”
In the text overlay, Thomason writes, “literally everyone who works in retail rn.”
Thomason vents his feelings in the caption, writing, “holiday season be killin me.”