This 2013 Global Food Policy Report is the third in an annual series that provides an in-depth look at major food policy developments and events. Initiated in response to resurgent interest in food and nutrition security, the series offers a yearly overview of the food policy developments that have contributed to or hindered progress in achieving food and nutrition security. It reviews what happened in food policy and why, examines key challenges and opportunities, shares new evidence and knowledge, and highlights emerging issues.
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Publisher
Intl Food Policy Res Inst
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Pages
19
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Best For
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Language
English
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Genres
Social Science / Agriculture & Food
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This content is DRM free.
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Michael Pollan, the bestselling author of The Omnivore's Dilemma, Food Rules, and How to Change Your Mind, explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen in Cooked. 

Now a docu-series streaming on Netflix, starring Pollan as he explores how cooking transforms food and shapes our world. Oscar-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney exectuve produces the four-part series based on Pollan's book, and each episode will focus on a different natural element: fire, water, air, and earth. 

In Cooked, Pollan discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements—fire, water, air, and earth—to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. Apprenticing himself to a succession of culinary masters, Pollan learns how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread, and ferment everything from cheese to beer.

Each section of Cooked tracks Pollan’s effort to master a single classic recipe using one of the four elements. A North Carolina barbecue pit master tutors him in the primal magic of fire; a Chez Panisse–trained cook schools him in the art of braising; a celebrated baker teaches him how air transforms grain and water into a fragrant loaf of bread; and finally, several mad-genius “fermentos” (a tribe that includes brewers, cheese makers, and all kinds of picklers) reveal how fungi and bacteria can perform the most amazing alchemies of all. The reader learns alongside Pollan, but the lessons move beyond the practical to become an investigation of how cooking involves us in a web of social and ecological relationships. Cooking, above all, connects us.

The effects of not cooking are similarly far reaching. Relying upon corporations to process our food means we consume large quantities of fat, sugar, and salt; disrupt an essential link to the natural world; and weaken our relationships with family and friends. In fact, Cooked argues, taking back control of cooking may be the single most important step anyone can take to help make the American food system healthier and more sustainable. Reclaiming cooking as an act of enjoyment and self-reliance, learning to perform the magic of these everyday transformations, opens the door to a more nourishing life.
This book’s main hypothesis is that Egypt’s large food subsidy system has been ineffective in reducing undernutrition; in fact, it may have contributed to sustaining and even aggravating both nutrition challenges. For a long time, the subsidy system provided only calorie-rich foods, at very low and constant prices and with quotas much above dietary recommendations. This system has created incentives to consume calorie-overladen and unbalanced diets, increasing the risks of child and maternal overnutrition and, at high subsidy levels, the risk of inadequate child nutrition. Moreover, the large public budget allocated to the food subsidies is unavailable for possibly more nutrition-beneficial spending, such as for child and maternal nutrition-specific interventions. The authors’ findings consistently suggest that—in addition to the well-known economic rationale for reforming the Egyptian food subsidy system—there are strong reasons to reform food subsidies due to nutrition and public health concerns. A fundamental food subsidy reform process has been under way since June 2014. The already-implemented changes can be expected to have reduced some incentives for overconsumption and may have positive dietary effects. However, further major reform efforts are needed to transform the current subsidy system into a key policy instrument in the fight against malnutrition. The findings of this book should be valuable to policy makers, analysts, development partners, and others concerned with improving food security and promoting healthy nutrition in Egypt and other developing countries with large social protection programs.
This report aims to inform and stimulate the debate on key policy priorities for poverty reduction and food security in light of the Arab Awakening. Its findings are based on an innovative combination of datasets and rigorous economic analysis. Results suggest that poverty and income inequality in the Arab world are likely higher than official numbers have long suggested. Given that poverty indicators seem to be misleading for many countries in the region, the report introduces a new welfare measure reflecting food insecurity risks at both national and household levels to classify Arab countries into five risk groups. Regression analyses further show that, unlike in the rest of the world, manufacturing- and service sectorled growth, rather than agriculture-led growth, is most pro-poor in Arab countries. In addition, high levels of public spending in the Arab world do not do as much to stimulate growth as in other world regions, particularly in the case of education. Three key policy recommendations emerge from this report: (1) improve data and capacity as the basis for evidence-based decisionmaking, (2) foster growth that enhances food security at national and household levels, and (3) significantly enhance the efficiency and retool the allocation of public spending. More generally, the report argues that the region urgently needs national dialogues about societies' joint vision and economic development strategies. Successful design and implementation of these strategies will require visionary leadership, sound laws and institutions, politicians who are accountable and listen to the voices of the people, and civil society that is patient and accepts the tenets of democracy. The Arab world is awakeit is time to move forward.
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