My day job deals with food policy (and hunger). I’ve subjected almost everyone I know (and if I haven’t, your turn is coming) to my rants about food and the need for available, affordable, appetizing, safe, and nutritious food for everyone. It’s something we’ve covered here at PostBourgie as well. It is a huge problem, that in lots of places, is only getting worse. This week’s US poverty numbers show more and more people worrying about “food insecurity” hunger.
Since a lot of PB is already working on a running challenge, I’d like to throw a food challenge into the mix. Quadmoniker and I will be partaking in InterAction’s Global Hunger Challenge. You can find more rules on their website, but the deal is that from today until next Friday, you pledge to eat off of $34.33 a week. That is the amount of the average Haitian food budget*.
Because of some prior commitments, I can’t do the entire week, but I am going to pledge to do Monday through Friday. That works out to $24.25 for the week, or about$4.90/day. That amount will cover everything I eat- breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks. It includes any beverages (milk, juice, beer), any spices, anything I eat. I’ll be posting updates along the week, and hopefully sharing some more info about hunger. One of my favorite things about PB is the commentariat, so I hope at least some of you will think about taking this on for a day or two. I’ll jump off my soapbox now and hand it off to quadmoniker. . .
As Nicole said, the challenge works out to be a scant $4.90 daily, and I think I’ve already blown my budget today with the purchase of a Selzter water from the corner store at work. For me, this will be a particularly enlightening challenge because I like to think my budget is fairly austere relative to many others I know: I make my food at home, I order takeout extremely rarely, and I shop for bargains. But little things, like seltzer water, add up. Also, like Nicole, I have a few prior commitments I’m working around, but I’m still going to keep track of those purchases to see what a difference they make.
One interesting nugget: I have already purchased and prepared a lot of the food I’ll be eating next week. Trying to tease out the exact cost of the one slice of pumpkin bread I ate this morning will be hard to do. I used a portion of the pumpkin I purchased at the market Sunday and already had the pantry items that went into the batter. But I’m hoping this is a useful exercise, since many of us don’t really know how much we save, or sometimes don’t save, by cooking at home.
*adjusted for purchasing power parity