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The Economics of Food: How Feeding and Fueling the Planet Affects Food Prices by Patrick Westhoff

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Chapter 5. Money in the Pocket, Food on the Plate

Rich people don’t starve and poor people don’t eat caviar. The causes of hunger are complex, but to put it simply, hunger occurs when people cannot obtain the food they need. Many people produce at least some of the food they eat, but most people must buy some or all of the food they consume. When people don’t have enough money in their pockets, they may not be able to put enough food on their plates.

Income affects how much people eat and what kinds of food they choose to buy. A hungry person who gets an increase in income is likely to buy more food. Someone who can already afford a basic diet may not buy much more food in response to an increase in income, but they may change the types of food ...

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