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The Political History of American Food AidAn Uneasy Benevolence$
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Barry Riley

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190228873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190228873.001.0001

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Change . . . and Resisting Change

Change . . . and Resisting Change

(p.476) 21 Change . . . and Resisting Change
The Political History of American Food Aid

Barry Riley

Oxford University Press

The combination of ongoing U.S. budget stringency and continually increasing prices for food globally means that the size of traditional food aid shipments has been dropping. But so, too, has the number of food-insecure people. Is the need for food aid also declining? The number of refugees and conflict-displaced people is at an all-time high. In absolute numbers the food security situation in Sub-Saharan Africa is not improving. Continued high population growth and a slowing of progress in agricultural yields in that continent may mean that the hunger problem may well increase rather than decrease over the next fifty years. A continuation of global warming trends seems likely to further retard yields of unirrigated food crops and increase food prices in poor countries. Can the experience of the past 220 years of American responses to hunger abroad inform America’s responses in the decades ahead?

Keywords:   hunger, Sub-Saharan Africa, the future, high population growth, global warming, crop yields, American benevolence

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