Local Foods Connection Blog

Local foods, hunger relief, sustainable agriculture

Did you know? A Local Foods Connection Index. February 19, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — caroline@LFC @ 4:03 pm

Iowa food insecure households: 132,000 (up from 112,000 households in 2003).

Iowa households which have at least one member that goes hungry at some time: 42,280 (23,500 in 2003).

Iowa food insecure individuals: 421,350.

Iowa poverty rates in 2005: 11.3% (up from 8.9% in 2003).

Each day, one in four Americans visits a fast-food restaurant.

Obesity-related illnesses will kill around 400,000 Americans in 2005 – almost as many as smoking.

French fries are the most eaten vegetable in America.

77% of African-American women and 61% of African-American males are obese.

Mexican American women are 1.5 times more likely to be obese than the general female population.

31% of low-income children between 2 and 5 years of age in Iowa are overweight or are at risk of becoming overweight.

Obesity prevalence is highest (28.2%) in those with income less than $15,000.

Ethnicity data is not available for Iowa.

Obesity rates decline as level of education increases:

less than high school: 27.4%
high school degree: 23.2%
some college: 21%
college or above: 15.7%

Iowa 2003 Consumption of Fruits and Vegetables:

Consume 5 or more servings per day:

17% of Iowa adults
23.6% of older adults
19% of adults with income less than $15,000
11.3% of adults without HS/GED degree
22% of US adults

The cost of vegetables and fruit rose 120% between 1985 and 2000, while the price of junk like sodas and sweets went up less than 50% on average.

Lower-income neighborhoods have an overabundance of predatory fast-food joints, bad takeout and small corner grocery stores stocked with less nutritious food.

Lower-income children depend on the federally funded National School Lunch Program for their primary hot meal of the day – and get basically the same high-fat, low-nutrition food as they would get at a fast food restaurant.

Families who rely on government assistance have a tendency to splurge when the monthly check or food stamps arrive, then find the cupboard bare toward the end of the month. This cyclical feast-or-famine diet unbalances your metabolism, so its east to store fat and hard to get rid of it.

To date, most characterizations of consumers who purchase organic products result from industry studies and offer conflicting views. The studies have focused on consumers of organic foods in general, not just consumers of organic milk. One element that has remained generally accepted through the years is that parents of young children or infants are more likely than those without children to purchase organic food.

Adapted from the 2003 and 2007 Hunger in Iowa Report by Susan Roberts and Erin Feld, Don’t Eat This Book: Fast Food and the Supersizing of America by Morgan Spurlock, Iowans Fit for Life, Active and Eating Smart: Nutrition and Physical Activity by the Iowa Department of Public Health, Retail and Consumer Aspects of the Organic Milk Market by Carolyn Dimitri and Kathryn M. Venezia for the US Dept. of Agriculture, May 2007.

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