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Feeding the World: America's New Deal

David Loyn looks at why US food aid policy is not working and investigates attempts to reform it. He travels to Kenya to see how more hungry people could be fed for the same money.

Since the end of the war, America's "Food for Peace" programme has shipped American-grown food in sacks across the world to feed the world's starving people. Virtually all experts agree it's an inefficient way to send aid, and the EU stopped doing it decades ago. According to Andrew Natsios, the former head of USAID, "I've watched people die in front of me waiting for food to arrive."

Now President Obama wants to reform the system to send more of emergency aid as money, and to buy food locally. But there is opposition to his plans for change and it looks likely the reforms will go nowhere.

The BBC's international development correspondent David Loyn travels to Afghanistan, and hears from farmers who say they stopped growing wheat and changed to opium poppies when American wheat flooded the local market during a time of plenty. And he travels to Kenya to look at pioneering efforts to deliver aid in a way that helps the local economy and puts power back in the hands of the poor.

Producer: Jolyon Jenkins.

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30 minutes

Last on

Sun 4 Aug 2013 13:30