Understanding food insecurity in the US: potential insights for the UK

Ground Floor lecture theatre, Muirhead Tower, Room G15
Lectures Talks and Workshops, Research, Social Sciences
Monday 3rd April 2017 (17:00-19:00)
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This lecture is free of charge but please register via this link to secure your place.

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IRiS lecture

Professor Craig Gundersen, Department of Agrictultural and Consumer Economics, University of Illinois

Food insecurity is the leading nutrition-related health care issue in the United States due to the magnitude of the problem (over 42 million Americans are food insecure) and its association with a wide array of negative health and other outcomes. With the exception of Canada, food insecurity has received substantially less attention in other high-income countries, including the UK. 

Nevertheless, there is both direct and indirect evidence that food insecurity and its attendant consequences are present in the UK. Given the similarities among US and the UK, research can offer numerous insights into the causes and consequences of food insecurity and possible directions to address these through measurement and public policies.  

The lecture will begin with an overview of the extent, determinants, and consequences of food insecurity in the US and, as part of this, discuss some results for the UK. Fortunately, the extensive research that has examined food insecurity has found many paths towards reductions in food insecurity; these willbe outlined with an emphasis on food assistance programs and, in particular, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program) and the National School Lunch Program (NSLP).