Do not create a hunger industrial complex in the UK as has happened in the USA. That’s a key message from Andy Fisher, author of “Big Hunger: The Unholy Alliance between Corporate America and Anti-hunger Groups”, who is touring the UK this month. The unholy alliance of his book title has failed to solve hunger in the US for over 30 years.
In this interview, he explains how the US system ignores the causes of hunger, benefits the givers and demeans the recipients. He talks about lessons the UK might learn and warns the country not to follow the US path of institutionalising food banks. “We have pretended that the problem is hunger and not poverty. We’ve pretended that the solution to hunger is charity, not ensuring the right to food or increasing the political power of the poor,” he says.
He sees real hope in Scotland where he was last week and where they are seeking to end the need for foodbanks and ensure people’s right to food is met.
I heard him speak last Friday at Huddersfield University – along with Chris Moller from Huddersfield University and Maddie Power from the University of York (see my Twitter feed @GeoffTansey for reports from the meeting with various slides from the presentations). You can still hear him this week in London on 14th and 16th and Cardiff on 17th November.